Butterflies, Bats and Breakfast | An update from Trace Thurlby, GO Project President
For years, mathematicians, engineers and even philosophers have discussed and debated the idea that a butterfly flapping its wings in the United States can create a hurricane in China. Given enough time, the theory goes, seemingly small events can lead to drastic outcomes. Regardless of your opinion on The Butterfly Effect*, recent events prove that we live in a world so connected that a bat in one community in China started a chain reaction infecting more than 8.2 million people (and counting) in over 200 countries and territories.
What we may not realize is this bat’s impact stretches well beyond Emergency Rooms. COVID-19 is also affecting dinner tables from India to the Congo to the Caribbean. The World Bank recently estimated that the global lockdown associated with the Coronavirus will push 49 million more people into extreme poverty this year**.
We are blessed in America. While we have real needs, very few people live on less than $2 a day. Yet, children from NYC to LA still feel the effects of the bat’s virus in their daily lives. Recently, the NY Times reported “that cases of child abuse have dropped sharply.” While this seems like good news, officials are concerned. Since schools have been closed or out of session and many child welfare agencies have been operating under stay-at-home orders, many school counselors and social workers haven’t seen some at-risk children in months. The decrease in numbers “could be a sign that an unseen epidemic of abuse is spreading behind locked doors.”***
The good news is the bat isn’t the only connected creature in this ecosystem. At GO Project, we see people, with the click of a mouse, giving to buy breakfast, lunch and dinner for children in desperate places half a world away. Connected by CarePortal, we see churches across the U.S. also stepping in to help stabilize local families in record numbers. We celebrate chain reactions of generosity that move faster than the virus, spreading the love of Jesus by loving our neighbors.
A butterfly or bat can create challenges. Yet, we stand firm on the promise that “Greater is He that is in you, than he that is in the world.” (1 John) What a privilege to care for God’s children with you, in tangible, meaningful ways, as simple as buying breakfast…for such a time as this! Please consider giving to our Greatest Needs fund to help our local partners care for children and communities in the U.S. and around the world.