This week has been tough - not in a bad things happening kind of way, but in a way where I have felt the Holy Spirit convicting me. Earlier this week, I wrote about how we should be okay to let of go things and even sacrifice in order to follow Christ uninhibited and I know that God was preparing my heart for what He wanted to say to me last night. My small group is currently doing Beth Moore's newest Bible study, James: Mercy Triumphs. It has been an amazing study and I have been growing so much by doing it - I highly recommend it. The study I was doing last night was based on James 5:1-6; please read through these verses.
I will say that Beth Moore focuses on a specific thing in these verses that is very important; however, God began breaking my heart as I read through these verses. I have shared with you that the word I am focusing on this year as I read the Bible is justice and so these verses screamed out at me INJUSTICE! By American standards I am not rich; however, if you have ever traveled to a third world country, you would have a different view of poor and rich. I want to first say that this message isn't against having wealth - it is about how we gain wealth and the importance it plays in our life. This particular passage is about gaining wealth through injustice.
At first view it would be easy to dismiss these verse because either you are a boss that gives fair wages to your workers or you are not a boss at all and so it would seem that this isn't about you. However, I want to consider something else - what do you buy? Please remember this is my own personal conviction, but I am sharing this with you because I know this isn't something that God is just saying to me. So many products we have in our homes were made by people around the world that were mistreated and paid unfairly for their work. In some cases, they were made possible through the sick practice of human trafficking. We cannot always know what products were made at the expense of injustice; however, in many cases we can find out what products were made by fair and just treatment of the people who worked on them. So, for someone like me who tries to save money I need to be more careful about how I am saving money. When I choose not to think about who I am buying a product from, I am choosing to have blind injustice. Just because I don't know (because I didn't ask) doesn't mean its okay.
Don't you think that it would be better to spend just a little more money on a product that is made by a company who is known to give fair wages to their employees? Take coffee, for instance. There are many companies that are known for working with farms that give fair wages to their workers but the cost of the coffee is a little more. I'm not saying that cheaper coffee is cheap because the workers are treated poorly; I'm just saying that if we know for sure that a certain brand treats their workers fairly, shouldn't we buy that product? So, paying a little more for my coffee so people in other parts of the world are treated justly is worth me not having a little more money to buy something I probably don't need anyway. This is a way we can intentionally do something good instead of unintentionally treating people unfairly.
Since I am using coffee as an example, here are two places where you can buy your coffee from:
Poetice International Mwana Coffee
Land of a Thousand Hills
This post is linked with Charlotte at Spiritual Sundays - please visit her blog!