Invisible to Visible.

path appears

Tonight at 10:00 pm on PBS the three- part series of A Path Appears premieres. The film is based on the book by Nicolas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn. The book was wonderful, I have no doubt the documentary will be the same.

Another married duo changing the world through their advocacy is Bill and Melinda Gates. They released their annual letter last week. As a member of the Global Team of 200, I have the privilege of sharing it with you through images.

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We live in an unprecedented time. What will our role be? Can we be global citizens that shift to place ourselves in proximity, so the invisible are visible?

 

Somewhere in America

two bites

Neither boy had traveled a particularly smooth school morning. At lunch time he held a container, tiny in size. “My Mom made this cake.”

With a plastic fork he scooped out half, and placed it in his classmates waiting palm. Left in the container was approximately one bite of that cake. Two bites total and he gave one away. The generosity of children to one another sometimes makes my eyes watery.

 

Brave New Voices is an international youth poetry slam festival.

This week I came across Somewhere in America, spoken by three young ladies in the troupe Get Lit. They recently opened for John Legend in the Hollywood Bowl.

See their electrifying performance here. 

 

Somewhere in America… there are people waiting for our voices.

On Martin Luther King Jr. Day many come together for a day of service.

Life’s most persistent and urgent question is: What are you doing for others? Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

 

A tiny cake, shared. Two bites total and he gave one away.

 

 

A Path Appears~ because of us.

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Nicholas Kristoff and Sheryl WuDunn the fearless team behind the book Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwidereleased a new book this past September.

A Path Appears talks about transforming lives and creating opportunity. Their reporting provides encouragement and also tells the stories of everyday people making a difference. They teach us to do justice thoughtfully, wearing a path to those in need.

A Path Appears Book Cover

The Film, A Path Appears, will premier on PBS this month in a three-part series on Jan 26, Feb 2, and Feb 9.

You can download discussion and lesson guides here. 

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A Path Appears for others~because of us.

Because we walk this way AGAIN and AGAIN. 

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a wide world

little fellowOver break I watched The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies.

Although much of JRR Tolkien’s works have spiritual undertones, I was particularly struck by the imagery of this movie. Smaug the great dragon has been killed. The people of Laketown gather in need of shelter, food, and clothing. Thorin Oakenshield, once a great leader, inhabits Lonely Mountain unwilling to share even one piece of gold.

Dwalin:  “You sit here, in these vast halls, with a crown upon your head and yet you are lesser now than you have ever been.”

“You cannot see what you have become.” 

Kili: “I will not hide, when others fight our battles for us.”

Of course, he comes around to be the great leader we all knew he was, abandoning wealth and power. Redemption. 

 

And as Gandolf leaves Bilbo with the powerful ring… “You really are just a little fellow, in a wide world.” Perspective.

 

I don’t know if I was all to ready for this new year. Even so, I know who I want to be.

 

I want to be brave and not hide. 

I want to love in close proximity… to do that, I know I must be quieter, stiller, gentler. 

I want to kneel because I know I am just a little fellow in a wide world. I know I need God. 

In this new year, what do you hope for? 

 

 

 

 

 

A Prayer for the New Year

decThe Time People of the Year are those fighting ebola. I love title of the article.

Do Good, Be Brave.

 

Those little white lights of the season always draw me into a quiet spirit. I am ready for a little stillness. About Proximity will be back in the new year. I love your voices. Growing to know you all more deeply makes my days and encourages me so very much.

 

I pray for our new year…

that we would be brave

that we would kneel often

that we would love in close proximity.

 

The Long Night

The Long Night

As part of my 36 Hope Expands Series, I am practicing proximity by sharing the film The Long Night by Tim Matsui with other members of The Global Team of 200. The film is free to watch through this weekend.

The film follows lives effected by domestic sex trafficking in the Seattle area.

Seattle. The United States. Human trafficking happens here too.

 

The Parents.

The Runaway

The Addict

The Police

 

The film is difficult to watch. Being exposed to such profound pain is not fun. I almost deleted this whole post, when I realized that part of proximity is hard.

Lisa-mcdsI would like to share two parts of the film with you.

Lisa, a heroin addict and prostitute, arrived at Genesis (a program implemented by the police to help trafficked minors into a new life.) A police officer gave her a bathrobe. She wept at the simple act of care.

Here you can see a photo essay of Lisa’s journey.

The runaway returned home, yet felt she would never be able to win her parents forgiveness. ‘I didn’t need to. They loved me unconditionally.’

 

Tim Matsui has not stopped with just making the film. He worked with The Fourth Act, an organization that brings storytellers and images together to create change and The Fledgling Fund doing the same through filmmaking.

 

There are hard things out there that shouldn’t be. It is so easy to look away.

Our challenge is to look and shrink the distance between us and those in need and respond. 

It’s about proximity. 

Start by viewing this photograph. It is cause to pause.