Reading between the lines, I could sense the heartache and frustration that were overwhelming my son. Never before had he been around so much suffering and death. He would write me expressing, “We work as hard as we can and still they die.”
He is working alongside other Christians at Chidamoyo Christian Hospital in Zimbabwe, Africa. They worked day after day to save the souls and bodies of people suffering from AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria and a myriad of other illnesses. My heart ached as I read his accounts of the delivery and deaths of premature twins and of the death of a small boy who had been badly burned.
There were also accounts of the many young pregnant women suffering from AIDS. Some of them had learned enough about their God to sing His praises in chapel. But through all of this hopelessness, there was still a glimmer of hope. We must never think that because we can’t do everything, we can’t do something of eternal value.
What could I write to my son and the faithful workers there in the hospital to encourage them? The words of Jesus in Mark 9:41 came to mind: “I tell you the truth, anyone who gives you a cup of water in my name because you belong to Christ will certainly not lose his reward.”
So I wrote: “Dear Son, for the most part you will have to leave the lives of those suffering people in God’s hands. You are the water boy, a very important member of God’s winning team. Just let God’s love flow through your smile, your words, and your touch. There is enough of the pure Water of Life to quench the thirst of any and all that come. He just needs more water boys like you.”
“I tell you the truth, anyone who gives you a cup of water in my name because you belong to Christ will certainly not lose his reward.”
– Mark 9:41 (NIV)
“Father, please help me also to be a “water girl” for You. I know that there is a lot of suffering which I can not explain, but show me what I can do to better Your kingdom here on earth. Bring to my mind people You would like me to bless today and what actions I can take to share Your love. . . .”