When you have a calling on your life you know it. The question is if you are going to answer the call, put it on hold or treat it like telemarketers and just ignore the constant ringing. I have been hearing it ring for a while and I have picked it up a few times to see if it was really for me. Every time I just told the person on the other end that they had the wrong number. The calls of late seem to be the correct number but the message is still unclear but is starting to come into focus.
Every time I return from the mission field I go through a time of reflection that turns into feeling of responsibility to do more. As I get back into the swing of life, going through the daily grind, this call slowly slips away and only comes back when I see a compelling image from the trip that stirs up the feeling of responsibility again. This time I don’t want the call to go away. I have come to the realization that telling the stories of those that don’t have a voice is important. Telling that story visually is critical in the process and can have a great impact on the viewer and more importantly the subject. Author Anne Lammot says, “That to be great, art must point at something. What you decide to point at - whether it’s the ugliness of injustice or the beauty of Vermont in the fall - is your vision. How you point at it is your craft. The more unique your vision, and the more practiced your craft, the more powerful your art.” For me it is something I strive for in my work. To point at darkness to show the light and allow others to experience what I call “Pure Faith”. Faith in that God is in control no matter what the circumstance. Could I have that faith? Faith in that feeding my family from the leftovers from the garbage dump and knowing it is going to be all right. Faith in that I am loved by someone somewhere even though I live in an orphanage with no one to give me a hug. I ask myself if I have the faith to endure what they endure every day? I hope and pray that I would but feel it would be a struggle.
Telling these stories and hearing the response from people like you gives me hope. Hope that one photograph taken in a split second of time can compel others to step forward and make a difference, or better yet, step out on faith and take up a cause as their life’s work.
Have you had a call? What have you done about it? Many people that I talk to say they didn’t lose anything in Africa, South America… I tell them it isn’t about finding something you have lost but finding something you never knew you needed.