Imagine this scene...it's a bright sunny day as you quickly stop at McDonalds for your breakfast. The coffee is hot, just the way you like it...yummy...then you power down a delicious egg McMuffin. You have your agenda loaded on your phone and you are ready to tackle the day.
You get back in your car, and then you see them, as they are running in your direction. A light tap on the window, saying "please-mister-please". As you look into their big innocent eyes you wonder what got them to this place. You dig into your pocket and grip the change you have left over, roll down your window, and put what you find into his dirty hand. He gives a half grin as he calculates his purchase in his head. His big brown eyes give a look of disappointment. He was hoping for more.
I saw this scene today. And it was convicting because I had more to give but didn't. On a mission trip, instructions are to not give money to the kids. They are hanging out at resturants for a reason. Most times someone put them up to it as they are a front for the one who is in charge. Very rarely do the kids who do the begging get to eat a yummy egg McMuffin. Very rarely. Once they receive your money they become a target and so do you. Not a good situation. Let's just leave it at that.
That's why the work of the Bridge of Hope Centers, who are supported by GFA, are so needed. They are taking begging kids like the one I encountered off the streets. This week I have seen plenty of need. Including some families that live in the slums and that is hard to take, especially when it involves children.
The difference is the love that Bridge of Hope gives. The centers not only feed the kids but also give them a wholistic approach to the health and well being of the child. They take care of the child's physical needs, emotional needs, spiritual needs and educational needs. And it's making a difference. The children are accepted into the project because of a desperate need of the family. And once coming to the BOH, the child takes hope back to his/her family.
A child should not have to beg for hope. It's freely given by the loving staff there, no matter their place in society. The BOH is sowing seeds of love into each child. There are 60,000 children across 484 centers all over India. This is making an impact into the lives of those children, but also developing communities and improving smiles and helping the kids grow to be strong and and more educated to bring about change. Thus breaking the cycle of poverty in which they live.
The BOH also includes women's ministries in their programs, teaching moms how to take care of their children and how to be better at parenting. Many of the families are becoming believers because of the hope that they receive from the pastor and staff at BOH.
Hope...is the bridge that closes the gap for a life of poverty and bright future. Thus the name Bridge of Hope. With God's direction and hearts devoted to giving hope, a better tomorrow is on the agenda.