Keturah asked me yesterday how my experience at Not For Sale has differed from my expectations. I told her that I did not come here with any expectations, and I thought I was being honest. But as I was trying to come up with a topic for this blog entry, I realized that I had a hope for this fellowship that has not yet been fulfilled. I wanted to feel like my work here mattered to victims of modern-day slavery.
Now, I need to be careful with how I word this thought. I am not saying that my work does not matter. This past week, I edited writing and video projects that will be read and viewed by some of the most powerful people in the world. Also, my presence here lightens the Not For Sale staff’s load and frees them up (a bit) to do the groundwork of abolition. But if I am helping to curb modern-day slavery by sitting at a computer in Half Moon Bay, my effect is intangible and slight.
I suppose the roots of my worry lie in my selfishness. I want to feel like I matter. I am like that kid who won’t play defense in capture-the-flag because he wants the excitement of scoring points. But if a team does not have someone at base playing defense, it will lose. (Can you tell I am a camp counselor during the summer?) I need to learn to be content with playing defense in Half Moon Bay. Not For Sale already has people that work up-close with former slaves. They have people on the ground. If they need someone to sit at a computer, then I will sit here.