Sunday, December 18, 2016

red sand project on ice

It was a frosty morning. I had an appointment, which was cancelled, so I suddenly had time for a chilled walk. I took my phone and a bag of red sand and began looking for cracks near alluring frost covered leaves. Playing with the sand and taking pictures, it didn't take long before a couple asked what I was doing: "Filling cracks in the pavement with red sand, to remember those who fall in between the cracks of society."

I explained how IJM uses this Red Sand Project to give modern day slaves a voice. These people had obviously been disappointed multiple times in their lives in trying to do good. They kind of liked what I was doing, but they also had about every possible argument against it.

As I mentioned some examples of IJM's work in India and the Philippines, they started: "Don't you think there's some people here in our country, who are disappearing between the cracks?"

The lady had once done door to door collecting for handicapped children to be able to go on holiday. She had met with negative responses, like people arguing: "But we haven't been able to go on vacation either for several years! Why should we give money to them?"

I told her she had been brave for going door to door. Honestly, I try to always explicitly thank those coming to my door for making the effort. Some are making Christmas packs right now, for people who normally wouldn't get a gift. There are all kinds of loving people, seeing all sorts of needs. "Isn't that exciting?" I naively beamed at her.

The gentleman asked me if I really thought anything would change in this world, with all those rich directors taking all the money. Besides, the people living in poverty and war seemed to be way too many. And did IJM think about what would happen to victims after being freed; wouldn't they be back in trouble very soon? Then he started on a stroll around a patch of frosty grass, leaving me to talk to his wife.

I told her I get to hear stories every week of people who have been freed from modern forms of slavery. For those who are pulled from the cracks, these efforts do matter. And yes, IJM makes sure these people receive aftercare and education to keep them from being subject to human trafficking once more. 

Imagine if our disappointment stops us from giving; we will no longer share in the joy of seeing anything change! So with Christmas on it's way may we dare to believe in peace on earth and goodwill to all men... tiny crack at a time. :)

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