Monday, October 23, 2006

How to Save a Life



"The little girl has red hair but it should be black," a man said tonight, pointing at images whirring on a projection screen at a baby girl in India with auburn hair so thin it showed her scalp.

"It's red because she's not getting enough nutrients," he explained, and that's when I saw her bare bottom peeking beneath her shirt. The baby crawled around the dirty streets with no diaper or anything on at the feet of grown men. I had to hold it together.

I was at The Chapel on the campus of The University of Akron, during their world missions night. Each room was set up as a different country, and in each I learned a little about the amazing work these admirable people of God are doing across the globe.

Could I be like them? Like the beautiful woman with the beautiful Spirit who told me she did fear being killed by the guys in Indonesia who are allowed to kill their wives with spears and no earthly retribution?

Can I be like the people who give up their homes and lives and luxuries (like a hot bath) to live amongst living lime-green walking sticks that are the size of a small child? I know I can. I hope I can. Despite the fact that I took my fin and human selfishness with me and bought coffee creamer instead of the billions of items it would've bought some impoverished girl.




That little girl from India stays with me now. Both going and coming, I heard How to Save a Life by The Fray and really listened to those amazing lyrics about a crack addicted teen that Isaac Slade tried to save.

I pray the shouldn't-be-red-headed-girl's life will be saved. I pray billions more will be saved in Christ.

Maybe she was Dalit, considered one of the outcasts or untouchables that the Hindu scriptures call the "unborn," mean it would have been better if she were never born. Maybe they are right.
That is, until comfy people like me get off their bums and stop blaming others and start doing more about it.

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Paula Neal Mooney