In 2013, my husband and I, along with our 1 year old son went to work for a Tribal Children Project (Yuva Community Development Center) in Wayanad which is in the northen part of Kerala, India. It is run by a Christian organization named Yuva Social Movement http://www.yuvasocialmovement.org/ The NGO works among the tribal community in Wayanad especially for children who are affected by extreme poverty. The mission of this movement is to provide nutritious food, clothes, medical care and holistic education to the impoverished children in the tribal colonies which are situated in the tiger reserved forests.
We had an opportunity to administer the Project work for a period of time.
Meanwhile, my daughter, who was newly born, developed some serious health issues so we needed to move to another city for her treatment. It was so hard to say bye to the kids who loved us so much. But we didn’t have any other choice than to leave them during that time.
A beautiful incident I can’t forget: They had a prayer activity named “Children in Prayer” every week. In this one hour activity, they would pray for their needs, for the Project’s needs, for their sponsors and for their families. One day they all gathered to pray for our daughter who was sick. One of the little girls around 10 years old prayed in her broken words for our baby Jennie.
“Dear Jesus, You can take my life but please heal our Jennie.”
It was the boldest prayer anyone could ever pray including me as a mother.
Her prayer brought tears in my eyes as she prayed with much weight on her heart for our daughter.
They indeed bestowed much love on us more than we could do for them. Their innocent talks, their pure faith in Jesus and their genuine love made a big difference in our lives.
Years passed by, we were settling in the new place, I was getting busy with the treatment of our daughter, and looking after my family and the memories of the time I had with these kids began to fade away slowly.
When things were settling down for me, I was given the opportunity from the Director of the Organization to take up some responsibilities in the administration work of the Project last year.
I worked for a few months from home with the sponsorship works, but I couldn’t continue as I had to quit to better care for my kids.
But every time I thought about those kids, a thought struck me…I couldn’t help them despite knowing their situation. Having worked in the Project for two years I had witnessed what poverty was. I had seen closely the negative effects poverty has on the children, their family and the community; I had seen their daily challenges, the suffering they go through. I was given an opportunity to extend my helping hand towards them, to make a difference in their lives, to help them have a better life and a better future.
I had a choice to forget them, to think that there are many people to work for them, to just ensure the wellness of my own kids, making sure they get good food, education, they don’t have to go to bed with hungry stomachs, and they have all the facilities to live happily.
But this time I wanted to choose the these children. As gratitude to their love and prayers for us, I want to stand for them and for their happiness.
I may not be able to put an end to their situation alone, but I will bring them the hope of Jesus by contributing my time to the work which benefits their future.
I want to serve as the light of Christ into the darkness of their poverty.
I have a choice to make. To keep the lamp hidden or to let it be used for its purpose.
I have a choice to close my ears and eyes to their struggles or to help them come out of it.
I have a choice to love them by my words or love them by my actions.
I have a choice to react on the social issues or pre -act on them.
When I read news on child abuse, child labour, prostitution, death caused by malnutrition I have a choice to fold back my newspaper, pick up my empty cup of tea and go on with my daily chores thanking God that my kids and I are safe or I have a choice to make all efforts to extend my help for these poor little lives in whatever ways I can…whomever God wants to place in my life.
I have a choice to be the hands and feet of Jesus or to stop them from reaching out.
Life is short and I might not have another chance to make a difference in this hurting world but now when I have a choice, I will seize it.
You have a choice too!
To make a difference in the world, to enlighten someone’s life with yours, to act against the social issues of society, to contribute your time, your talents, your financial help, your prayers, a part of your life and to be the light of Christ to the suffering world.
As you read this blog post, I would like you to spend a minute praying for these precious children of Wayanad, India, and for all the children in the world who are suffering under the crushing weight of poverty and injustice. Pray that they will be reached with God’s love and hope.
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