Food is a precious gift, generously given to us by God, and one that is so often at the heart of our fellowship. As we come together to share a meal with family and friends, we are nourished in body and spirit – giving thanks for the abundant provision of God.
On many occasions we see food at the heart of Jesus’ ministry on earth: food for hungry crowds, feasts and celebrations, and sharing his table with both his friends and people from the margins.
Through the sharing of food, Jesus demonstrated his power to renew and restore the broken. When he gathered his disciples for one last meal together, Jesus turned the simple act of breaking bread into an enduring symbol of our restored communion with God and relationships with one another.
We know that for many people in our world today, getting enough food remains a constant challenge. In fact, 1 in 11 people in our world go hungry. And right now, after decades of steady decline, global hunger is on the rise.
Yep, you read that right. At a time when there is more than enough to go around, this is just unthinkable.
The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, together with ongoing challenges of conflict and climate, have set back the hard-won progress made to ensure everyone has enough to eat.
Recent reports from the UN World Food Programme have projected that famine is “knocking on the door” for millions of families.
Secure, reliable access to food is one of the basic building blocks that make it possible for people to lift themselves out of poverty. Even more than filling empty bellies, good nutrition paves the way for a whole host of flow-on benefits – things like better health, more reliable income and increased school attendance. That’s why community development projects related to food are among the most common activities supported by Tearfund.
They all ate and were satisfied, and the disciples picked up twelve basketfuls of broken pieces that were left over.
We see in the Bible that God’s pattern for provision goes beyond the bare minimum, and He calls the church to reflect His generous and abundant nature in a world focused on fear and self-protection. He calls us to imagine, through His eyes, what more than enough can look like for all people in the world, including mothers like Misozi.
We met Misozi, a widow from with seven children on a trip to Zambia. Not long ago, after her husband died, she was struggling to make ends meet, not sure where her next meal would be coming from.
Now, she is facing a future with more than enough with the support of TEAR’s Christian partner, the Reformed Church in Zambia Diaconia Department (RCZ-DD).
RCZ-DD has been active in her village for the last three years, working alongside farmers to diversify their crops, protect the soil and improve yields, even in the face of drought and an increasingly unpredictable climate. With these methods, people in need, like Misozi have been able to break free from cycles that kept them dependent on unreliable practices.
The community is seeing huge improvements in health as families are eating a more varied diet and growing in their understanding of nutrition. On top of this, RCZ-DD has been active in educating people on a range of human rights issues, breaking down barriers and leading to restored relationships and stronger communities