Brick kiln is modern day slavery. Workers have to make bricks for ten hours a day, seven days a week. Many poor Christians are trapped in a cycle of debt doing this back-breaking work. On bad days when they can’t work, they have no pay and must borrow money from their brick kiln owners. They sink even further into the mire of debt. This vicious cycle can last for generations. Thus, children often have to work instead of going to school.
I just read a wonderful article by Barnabas Aid, an organisation that helps persecuted Christians around the world. Christians have paid the debts of Christian brick kiln workers fully. Now these Pakistani Christians can work and receive a proper salary. Now their children can study in school. There is hope for their future.
James, a former brick kiln worker, relates:
“We have been taken out of the quagmire,” he exclaimed to Barnabas Fund, with a shining face that radiated peace and joy. “We had never imagined that we could be free!”
Isn’t that amazing?
They were redeemed out of slavery. They were freed.
No more debt. No more slavery.
Do donate to this worthy cause if you have the resources to do so. There are many other projects on Barnabas Aid for your consideration.
This freedom from slavery and poverty reminds me of Elisha and the widow’s oil in 2 Kings 4:1-7.
The widow’s husband just died, leaving them in debt. Maybe her husband’s medical bills had taken a toil on the finances. Now the debtors were coming to take her two boys into slavery.
She lost her husband. Was she going to lose her two sons also?
That’s what happens to many brick kiln workers too. The hard brutal work leaves many sick and ill. James’ wife had died from illness. No wonder families and generations are trapped in slavery.
Note that the widow’s husband was a prophet. Being a godly person does not exempt Christians from trouble and hardship.
Just look at the Christians suffering around the world. Would you do something for them?
Elisha responded immediately. He had to break the debt with God’s help. He told her to collect empty jars and pour her little oil into all the jars. She thought she had nothing but a little olive oil. That’s enough for God. He can do amazing things with what you give him. We think we have little resources to give. Think again. God can multiply whatever you give to him.
She kept pouring the oil until she ran out of jars. She ran out of jars! She started with a lack of oil but ended with a lack of jars. She had enough to pay off her debt and live off the rest of the sales. Barnabas Aid pays off the brick kiln worker’s debt and gives them a monthly food parcel so that they won’t fall into debt again.
That’s what Jesus did for us too.
We were all slaves to sin without a way to escape. We were doomed to eternal damnation.
But Jesus died on the cross for us. His blood redeemed us from slavery to sin.
Now we are free to love God. To serve God. We have a hope and a future.
It is through the Son, at the cost of his own blood, that we are redeemed, freely forgiven through that full and generous grace which has overflowed into our lives and opened our eyes to the truth.
Ephesians 1:7-8 (J.B. Phillips New Testament)
Jesus gave his life for you and me.
Would you do something for your Christian brothers and sisters suffering around the world?