Eve Annunziato

I’m An Ungrateful @#*%! July 21, 2008

Filed under: Ministry — Eve Annunziato @ 2:45 am
Tags: , , , , , , ,

Just the other day I was complaining because I don’t have a garbage disposal. Due to the fact we live on land outside the city, we have a septic tank and our builder discouraged installing a disposal for risk of clogging up the tank. But, while I was fishing out pieces of half-eaten food from the drain that my kids accidentally put in the kitchen sink, I told my husband that was it. I had it. I’m purchasing a disposal despite the warning. My thought process and words went something like, “This is barbaric and I refuse to live with out this modern common kitchen appliance.” In other words, the inconvenience was unacceptable. It was time my kitchen had a disposal!

Fast forward a few weeks. A team of more than 20 volunteers from my church community, Cross Point, has spent the past week in the Dominican Republic assisting in building a worship and feeding center. Each year, the volunteers arrive in a small village on the Island just outside Santiago to work in the blistering heat day after day, hour after hour, cement bucket after cement bucket, digging trenches, pouring concrete and laying block. When each day’s work is done, they make their way over to the barrio of “Heja Del Ciamito” – a dorm that doesn’t always have water or electricity, I imagine exhausted yet fulfilled to say the least. We’ve been praying for this team and, fortunately, during this trip can keep up with their ventures via the mission blog. I’ve been blown away while reading the updates written by Anne Jackson. Most of you know Anne and her amazing and inspiring posts. She’s an incredible gifted and published writer, a down-to-earth communicator, and has an unwavering heart for missions. Anne is also the newest addition to our church staff family. I have had the privilege of getting to know her over the past few weeks. (Anne has one of the top blogs in Christian Leadership – so check her out here and you’ll be blessed as a result). Here are some of Anne’s observations while in the DR:

“i never can seem to translate what is in my head after visiting a slum. a true third-world slum. the sights and smells and naked babies and starved dogs and sweat and raw sewage and shacks and the most impacting thing. hope.”

Then, Anne posed this question:

“How can we consistently show those in developed, consumer-driven countries that places like this exist? That, although, these places need clean water, sanitation, food and medical care, we need their hope, simplicity, community, and generosity.”

How did I feel after reading her profound observations poignantly worded? My mixed emotions included hope, despair, sadness, joy, helplessness, thankfulness, encouragement, discouragement, but more than anything, I realized how UNGRATEFUL I can be. This reminder of how most of the world lives, suffers, and fights to simply stay alive with unyielding hope and faith, is yet another awakening for this unthankful, unappreciative consumer. It’s a privilege to serve in a mission-focused church and an absolute honor to serve along side volunteers whose goal is to reach those outside of Christ and to serve those outside living in the slums of the earth. I vow never to complain about the lack of a kitchen luxury again. I will be eternally thankful each time I reach my hand down the drain and fetch those nasty, stinky, leftovers. Rather than complaining, I promise to give thanks to God and give thanks for people, like our servants in the mission field, who venture out of their comfort zone and risk everything but in the process gain EVERYTHING!

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13 Responses to “I’m An Ungrateful @#*%!”

  1. Clark Bunch Says:

    For what it costs a couple to eat out once in decent restaurant, a family of four could live on for a month in most countries in the world. My dog drinks cleaner water than about 60% of the earth’s population. We are surrounded by so much excess that we become desensitized to it; we don’t realize how much we don’t give thanks for until we are confronted with those who have nothing.

  2. Great point, Clark, and something to really think about. Sometimes we all just need a wake-up call. Thanks for your comment.

  3. anne jackson Says:

    thank you for this post girl. i hope to see you soon! 🙂 much love.

    #42

  4. melissa1970 Says:

    great post. so true. i filled out my application for a passport this weekend and am going to apply this week, so i can go to the DR next year. i need a wake up call….big time!

  5. Anne – safe travels! We’re praying for you!

    Melissa – I’m so proud of you. They’ll love you down there!! I bet it will be life changing. Charlie and I are talking about it, too.

  6. Will Young Says:

    Thank you for sharing.

    Your words resonate with where I’m at.

    Thanks again!

  7. Thanks so much for stopping by, Will. I appreciate your transparency.

  8. Jenni Catron Says:

    Great perspective, Eve!

  9. fullofboys Says:

    I love this post (and all of Anne’s as well!). I love the simplicity that places like the DR offer. I always come back changed. Thanks for the reminder to be grateful for the blessings God has placed in my life!

  10. Thanks Jenni.

    I agree, Jenn, third world countries do offer simplicity. Simplicity is my goal!

  11. 5th Street Says:

    I agree that we don’t realise how great we have it until we travel to a third world country. BBUUUTTTTT, I think you should have a garbage disposal. How backwards is Pegram???

    BTW Eve, I LOVE YOUR BLOG. It is one of my Fab Five Favs.

  12. Eric Says:

    Eve,
    We have became a people whose lives are so fast-paced that we strive for anything better that saves us time. We should remember those less fortunate and those that our modern way of life has passed by.

  13. Brian – you’re so funny but very sweet, too!

    Eric – VERY true! Great point!


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