There is rarely a day when I don't have the urge to smack someone.
Now, before you rush into a tizzy about violent tendencies, read on.
I work with people, lots of people. I work in customer service, for a lack of better term. And I have learned that while people as individuals can be great, as a large collective, humanity isn't doing so great. I know that we can do great, wonderful things. Like rushing to give blood after 9/11, and helping hurricane victims and sending aid to other countries when needed. We have our high points. But I maintain that for every high is an equal low. Due to the nature of my job, I get to deal with more of the lows than the highs.
Recently, we've been cleaning house on our correspondents. These are people that have agreed to write a child when the sponsor is unable or unwilling to do so.
You would think that these people would be a wonderful group of people, giving of their time to write to a child half way across the world. We do have some wonderful correspondents. But then, we have some that are just terrible. We are now sorting through the good and bad. Of course, I only get to see the bad ones that require action.
Today, one guy on my list hadn't written to his child in the 5+ years he had been the correspondent! Five years! The little girl is 10. Imagine, she's had a sponsor (kids don't know the difference between correspondents and sponsors) for half her life and she's never heard a word from him. If the guy had been standing at my cube I would have decked him.
Since he hadn't written in the last year I thankfully didn't have to contact him. Rather, I marched myself over to the desk where correspondents are assigned and unassigned. I asked the gal to pretty please right away cancel the bad man and give the child to me. I just couldn't stand the thought of putting her on a waiting list (we have close to 100 kids now who need new correspondents because we are purging the bad ones) and not know if she would get a good writer or not.
Do I have the time and energy to take on a new child? I already have my Karen and two correspondent kids (Lonali and Habiba, both in Africa) and I write to dad's six kids.
I asked myself if I was crazy.
Then I looked at little Lesly's photo. There stood a beautiful little girl who seemed older than her 10 years. A shy smile, sparkling eyes and confidence despite her situation. That's when I remembered that it doesn't matter if I have time- I can make it. It takes maybe 10 minutes to write a letter. Even writing once a month, that's not much of anything. But to Lesly, it could mean the world.
I wrote my first letter to her and turned it in before leaving work. She got a letter that told her how excited I am to get to know her and that we both like to read. It tells her that Jesus loves her very much and made her special. It tells her that I am praying for her.
Yes, she is worth it and I'm crazy. Crazy about making a difference. It's an incredible feeling to know that somewhere, on the other side of the globe, there is a person who has a changed life because of something I did. I've seen it with my Sandra... that little shy girl who I sponsored for 7 years. Today she is a confident young woman who knows she is worth something. Her community is the better for it, her country, the world. All because someone took the time to say, "You are important, you are worth something and I love you."
Okay, I feel better now. I just needed to get that out. There's my verbal smack to people who don't realize that they are destroying the hope of a child. That they are disobeying their call to care for the poor and needy, widows and orphans. If you aren't up to the call, don't answer. Or at least make an effort.
Deep breath now.
If there are any of you out there who want to make a difference, who have 10 minutes a month to change the world for a child, please let me know. Like I said, we have kids waiting. Lots of kids waiting. Post a comment with your email address (if I don't have it already) and say "Yes" to making an impact in a child's life today.
End infomercial here.