Thanks to Atlanta traffic I read a lot. Audible.com is my secret weapon. Commuting from work in Cumming to grad school at GA Tech three nights a week for three years is gold for getting through a ton of books. Check out my GoodReads account & please be impressed! ;-) I bought a book yesterday, finished it & am reading it again today. The book is For The Love by Jen Hatmaker & you have her directly to thank for the sarcastic wit of this post. Humor is a natural symptom of 6 hours of comedic gold that is Jen Hatmaker. Now lest you think of grandmas knitting & baking because of the title, think of it morels what you say when you hit that inevitable wall of Atlanta traffic: "For the love of Elvis & all that is holy & hairy!"
In one of the chapters she soberly addresses the do-gooder servants that can slip unintentionally into doing more harm than good. A great reminder as we are 2 weeks from embarking to a far away land known as Cambodia.
Here's how we're going to serve for the good of the communities we're visiting & not just ourselves:
- We are going to serve. Serve. Not solve, not colonize, not create. To serve people. That are there. That live it. Everyday. And are doing something about it. We hope to find a way to bend, use, lend or leverage our Western American experience, skills, training, privilege & bias to help these people go further faster in what they're doing & changing. Which brings me to point number 2:
- We don't have all the answers. I'll give you a moment to absorb that. With our fancy degrees & successful careers & adorable shoes & $4 coffees...it's shocking I know. So we're not bringing answers. Ideas, sure. But we're going to listen first & seek to understand & ask them how we can help. How they would like us to help.
- We're doing more than just 10 days over there. This one is tricky because we have no idea what it is yet. Tiffany's committed to helping Cambodia. She was changed for the better after her first trip & wants to go deep there. Me? I'm passionate about marrying good ol' product demand with fair trade manufacturing. I'm sorry, I can't buy anymore jewelry I don't like because I love the cause. We all want to love both. Loving both the cause & the product is what gives birth to sustainability. So we're simply showing up, getting plugged in & we'll figure it out from there. But this is a beginning. Of showing up.
So there it is. We're doing our best to not make it about us & listen & go deep & affect change. We don't want this to be poverty tourism & are intentionally avoiding it. For the love.
And just to end this on a saucy high note, here's our latest update video set to an 80's classic that no one understands. You're welcome.
For the Love,