My oldest son just got home from an amazing conference in Atlanta, Passion 2010. He already felt called to mission work, but came home really pumped about all kinds of opportunities. It's exciting to see God at work in this young man who nursed until his third birthday, slept with us when he was little, spent many hours in a baby sling, and learned about trust from day one as we taught him to trust us.
He was five when our family went to Costa Rica, then Peru to serve as missionaries. During his formative years, he saw me working as a lactation consultant in developing countries. He also heard our dinner table conversation which occasionally consisted of diatribes against Nestle born of my frustration with the damage they were causing to mothers and babies in Andean countries (and around the world).
Fast forward to Passion 2010. The ministries involved did a great job of presenting the work they are doing in developing nations around the world. He was particularly impressed with the work of one organization who has a project designed to support prenatal health and postpartum care and instruction. He even told the representatives that his mom would LOVE to be involved in providing any breastfeeding information they might need! (Then he called me to make sure I was okay with that!)
However, as he looked at the many pictures of precious children suspended from the ceiling at their display, he saw one picture which caused an immediate strong reaction of anger! It was a picture of a smiling tyke holding a carton marked Nestle. His anger wasn't directed at the mission agency at all. He realized they were simply trying to portray the reality of what children experience. But he felt furious at Nestle for compromising the health of so many infants. He was even able to explain to his girlfriend just what it was that made him so angry about the picture.
As he told me this story, my mama heart swelled with pride because he really gets it! He understands that supporting and protecting people in developing countries means helping mothers trust their own ability to provide the very best nutrition for their babies.