Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Three Cups of Tea

So while on vacation in Florida, tanning my legs in the afternoon sun while my son takes a nap. I finally finished a book I've been reading for a while (like a month, and that's forever for me. I guess that shows me how crazy my life really has gotten lately.) Three Cups of Tea, written by David Oliver Relin and told by Greg Mortenson. It rocks! I want to say "it is the inspirational story of Greg following his heart", but inspirational has become a sort of fluffy word, with a lot of feel good emotion attached, and that it is not. It is a book based on the reality's of war, human sacrifice, family sacrifice, religion, and politics. I guess it doesn't really get less fluffy than that! Greg is a mountain climber who discovers that his life's journey is to educate the children, and especially girls, or Northern Pakistan and Afghanistan. It becomes his way of fighting the war on ignorance, or as we call it- terror. This poignant tale of Greg's journey to conquer the mountains, culture, language and religions of the middle east to bring education to some of the most remote places on earth is a tale that makes you realize that you really can make a difference in this world.
"As the U.S. confronts Sadam Hussein's reigime in Iraq, Greg Mortenson, 45, is quitely raging his own campaign against Islamic fundamentalits, who often recruit members through religious schools called madrassas. Mortenson's approach hingeds on a single idea: that by building secular schools and helping to promote education- particularly for girls- in the world's most volatile war zone, support for the Taliban and other extremists sects eventually will dry up." Kevin Fedarko- Parade Magazine
I think as Christians a lot of time we focus solely on evangelizing, and "spreading" the gospel that we forget to provide for the poor, orphan, and widowed's, basic needs. Mortenson is a true example of the living gospel (although not a Christian per se). Helping to provide education and hope to the poor and illeterate ultimately providing them with the eduction to make their own decisions and feel empowered to do so, there isn't much else that is more powerful. I encourage everyone to go pick up this book at your local library, and if they don't have it, go buy it and then donate it to your library. A great read, educational, and a wondefrul perspective on "the war on terrorism". It has definitely changed my way of thinking on many levels. Go read it!

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