Although only five years old, I remember that particular September day.
It was the weekend of the Ogle County Fair which meant jumping in our 1951 Ford with my family and driving to the fairgrounds. Upon arrival, my sister went with her cousin to check out the fair. I stayed with mom and dad.
My parents first treated me to a hot dog and Nehi Cream Soda. Afterward, we walked around looking at farm exhibits.
Dad was interested in a tractor at one tent and talked to a lively salesman. Mom listened to the haggling and laughed at the two men. I stood there for a few moments, but the sounds of the fair tugged on my ears.
“Step right up and win yourself a teddy bear.”
“Get your ticket now for the tilt-a-whirl.”
“Hurry, hurry! Right this way!”
Without a word, I turned and followed the sounds. The crowd swept me along in its current to the carnival games and rides. Everything seemed so alive until a revelation dawned upon me: where’s Mom and Dad?
I backtracked to the tractor exhibit, but they were gone. I searched here, there, and everywhere. No parents. Finally, I stopped by a tree and cried. The thoughts of never seeing my parents again and wondering what would happen to me bombarded my mind.
Then, I heard a voice.
“Sonny, I’m here,” said Dad, leaning over to give me a hug.
My life began again at that moment.
This experience occurred years ago and lasted twenty or so minutes, but do you know in India there are 11 million abandoned children whose experiences never end? Little ones left to fend for themselves by poor parents who can no longer afford to care for them. 90% of these abandoned children are little girls.
Three million of these children end up living on the streets. A million or so of the little girls will end up in the sex trade with a life expectancy of 15 years of age.
What can we do?
Gospel For Asia’s Bridge of Hope offers us an opportunity to sponsor children, with 100% of our financial offerings going directly to help the children.
Like my dad on that day long ago, we can be a loving voice to these children which says, “I’m here.”