There she is... little Sandra, missing a limb...running around trying to jump rope using just one arm, her malnourished belly evident through her little blue sweater with a dangling sleeve. Struggling, she makes for herself a makeshift chair of two stones and a piece of wood in a canvas tent held up by several logs to soak up the lessons for the day.
Cute little Success forging her way to school with a fierce look of determination in her eyes as she climbs for miles on steep terrain with her little sister clinging to her back. The intense satisfaction as she writes her name for the first time is written all over her face.
And then there is Brave... holding his head high, set as the class leader. There is so much potential in those willing hands and that bright little mind. Their mama at home is being eaten away by the life-consuming disease of AIDS. Countless other little faces with struggles of their own working, learning and pushing through the circumstances of their poverty-stricken lives.
It didn’t take long for me to realize I was taking a step into a world so unlike my own. This change of perspective opened my mind to the life of complete gratitude I should be living. I look into their eyes and see their world. A world of poverty, suffering and hunger. As they stare back, a small flicker of hope arises as their faces light up with radiant smiles. Alone, I won’t be able to completely change the circumstances of Bujira, of Uganda, or of Africa and neither can you... but for every hand that we hold, mouth that we feed, or hug that we give, a small seed of change is planted. May the Lord continue to bless all those who decide to remove themselves from their world of comfort, abundance and ingratitude and help those in desperate need.