Its not just food

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So they have started coming in their numbers now; to the candlelight foundation. We are making an impact, bringing light to their darkness. We have served over 3200 meals in just 3 short months, provided clean water for people to shower, a conducive environment for people to relax and take shelter from the sun and then while seeking funding, someone asked me if its “just food” we are providing.

Some of these people have no homes, no family, no jobs. All they know is a life of hardship and toil. They have no civic responsibility to their country that has failed them. They have a sense of entitlement that’s beyond my comprehension. A lot of them are selfish, wicked and manner less but what do you expect from one who doesn’t know better. Who has no one to teach him and whose look, behavior, voice and character repulses those that would be able to help. It’s a vicious cycle of poverty, mental and emotional stress and character where the fact that they are poor leads them to believe they don’t belong in certain circles and cannot access those circles. If they have no access to avenues to learn socially acceptable behavior, ethics, etiquette and self-worth, how then can they function in these qualities?

Ladies and gentlemen, the few that I have been privileged to meet have left me with mixed observations; Some are weary of me wondering what and why I am doing what I do. Some are appreciative to the point of wanting to take advantage of me and some are entitled thinking I owe them the meals I provide. I blame no category. It’s not their fault. I’m a firm believer that where you are may not even be you fault (sometimes.. a lot of the time… it is) but wherever you are, you need not stay there.

According to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, food is the most basic need. It is one of the strongest needs considering we need food to live and function productively. He also explains that your need is your motivation. The wonderful men and women of the elite class can only make comments like “If it ain’t about money I’m not interested” or “my container di na ocean” (in the very igbotic accent lol meaning my container is on the way) or even “what shoes will I wear today” because they have food they have eaten or will eat. When you are not concerned about where your next meal is coming from but instead have a variety to choose from, you are freed to meet the other needs in your life.

The man that hasn’t eaten for 2 days will begin looking at the frozen food seller, (who is barely making it mind you) as a target for his next meal. And when he strikes, he will say it’s the devil. No.. its hunger. The amount of hunger induced crimes in our community is staggering and yet they ask me if its “just food” I provide.

My people you will not understand unless you are there. You will not comprehend the depth of the suffering until you have been forced to take someone’s left overs or search the bins for scraps. Until you are forced to break another mans heart because you must survive. Or forcefully take what one has built all for your will to live. You will not get it until you have heard their stories and seen their tears. Until you understand that when the strongest yet most basic need is not fulfilled in your life, you are in bondage every day. You will do any and everything to ensure its met because you must live.

My people food is life!

You tell a hungry man ‘God bless you” and walk away. He wonders where the blessing is. You tell him “God bless you “ and give him a meal or money, he is more interested in knowing about these blessings. He is more receptive to hearing about these blessings; to see if these blessings can become an everyday affair. You have gotten his attention.

You cannot make an impact in a hungry man’s life until he has eaten!

The Candlelight allows this man to be patient. He can rest assured that tomorrow he will eat at the candlelight. He has peace because while he sells his pure water in traffic he knows his wife and baby will eat at least once. He can turn his energy to something else. He is happier because the burden isn’t on him so much anymore. Because no matter how bad it gets, the candlelight will still open tomorrow.

So …..they have started coming in their numbers now; to the candlelight foundation. …… and someone asked me if its “just food” we provide and the answer is NO! what we provide is not “just food”, what we provide is one of the strongest forces in the world- hope!

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