This morning I had the opportunity to catch up with a valued colleague and friend Emma LoRusso. One of the things I really value about Emma is her ability to see the way forward and devise the strategies to get there. Over some scrambled eggs and coffee, she helped calibrate and clarify a few thoughts I’ve been having and as a consequence, I want to share with you an idea and passion that I want to pursue.
In 1999, I ventured on my first, short-term missionary trip to India. It changed my world. Having grown up in one of the most privileged countries in the world, I had never seen poverty like what I saw in India. So many people; so little material wealth.
But even more confronting was the slow realization that maybe I was the one who was impoverished. In spite of all my material wealth and good fortune, maybe I was the one who had the greater need.
The defining moment came for me when I shared a meal with an Indian family in a village whose name I could never pronounce. From a woodfire that had been cut into the earthen floor of what would otherwise be the verandah, the mother of the house served a bowl of rice with chicken curry that was so heavily spiced that it made my hands burn. And as I sat on the edge of the bed that doubled as their couch and begin eating with bare hands, it was as if my eyes had suddenly gained their vision for the first time. With the material facade pulled away I could see the world in a new light, and that the essence of living ran much deeper than my material possessions would have me believe.
This epiphany was profound but no amount of words would allow me to convey it to you in all its richness; you must experience it for yourself. Somehow, I must take you there.
And so I want to create a ‘Schoolies week in India’ program that gives you that opportunity. I want to take you out of your comfort zone and show you places and people that will change your world. And I want you to take that experience as a young adult and combine it with your passions so that you can know what to do with your future. This is my passion.