Ubuntu. I am because you are. All those poverty-stricken bodies we only see on television are many of the reasons I exist. They exist because I am. While sounding mysterious, ubuntu is a relatively simple concept to grasp once properly framed in context.
I am because you are.
We are interconnected. We are not islands. Your death affects my life. My life affects your future. Your future affects my choices and so on and outward it grows. God was exacting and deliberate that we live as such. For not only do we live in relationship with Him, but also with one another… "as I have loved you, so now you must love one another."
Simon Guillebaud told many stories at YC this year that touched me deeply. But one story burned itself into my retinas and indeed to the very back of my brain. And that was the story of Grace.
Just over 3 years ago in Burundi, Africa, Grace's biological mother decided she wanted to terminate her pregnancy. The fetus was dumped into a toilet — an outdoor pit in that part of the world. Who knew this beautiful child was still alive?
Someone did. Someone actually managed to see a struggling fetus down that dark, stinking, filthy pit reeking of crap, menstrual fluid, urine, vomit, garbage. And that somebody braved its hell and fished the fetus out.
It was a girl. A wonderful, miraculous, beautiful baby girl.
Weighing in at 2lbs, she was fed using small instrument used to feed baby birds. She was named Grace. And Grace not only survived, but she thrived. I have seen her. She is indeed lovely! And I bow in reverence to my King who saw fit to connect my life to her life, and vice versa. No merit do I possess to be because she is.
Is there a more perfect picture of Grace than of Grace herself? God, knowing there was no other way to save a struggling piece of trash such as I, entered into the pit of refuse and ugly indecency, wrapped His hands about me, and drew me out of the miry pit, drew me to Himself. He cleaned me, fed me, saved me. He loved me. He loves me…
It is here that one of my heroine's famous statements is all too true: "There is no pit so deep, that God's love is not deeper still." (Corrie ten Boom)
Ah, the flourishing story of Grace. She is the beauty that walks quietly and yet with authority through our dark nights and draws us to the dawn. She puts shame to shame, and topples powers of arrogance. She wanders at random, it seems, to the nastiest forgotten holes of the world; but in truth, she strides with purpose from her Father and brings life to those who long since thought God had abandoned them. Her light sparks life in the eyes of the dead, and her breath fills the lungs of the decaying. Her courage pushes souls to the outer limits of worldly reason and we die… we die to the world and come alive in Christ. This strange, peculiar, mysterious and freeing creature of whom we have no right to, we have no ownership of, of whom we hardly understand at all…
Her name, indeed, be Grace.
Risk it all.
Go change the world.
Find who you are because they all live… because He lives.