Each time that we have been at Light of Hope, we have had the privilege of participating in the rescue of girls from a place of hopelessness and bringing them to Light of Hope.
Miriam, the director of LOH, and Hilda, the social worker, invited Amanda and me to go to a home outside of Karate. It was a small 3 room house made from stones, mud, and a metal roof. It had a dirt floor and part of one wall had collapsed, meaning there was no safety or security to found in this home. A trough was dug in the floor, because when it rains the home floods. If ever they have anything of value (food, for example), it is stolen. The house is situated by a stone quarry. The father took his own life in 2010 after learning he was HIV positive. He hung himself in the bedroom, leaving behind a wife and four children. A fifth child was born after another man made a promise to the wife but ran off when she became pregnant. The singular goal each day is to survive that day. Frankly, even that seems hopeless. There is no such thing as a future. The children range in age from 2-15 years, but all of the children are malnourished and appear much younger than their age.
The mother and children work in the stone quarry, breaking stones just in case today might be the day that someone would pay them for the stones they have. Rarely is today the day. The only water that they have is ground water (a stream that is currently small pools of standing water). Honestly, most of us would not even allow animals to live in such conditions. Word of mouth referred this family to LOH. On this day, the mother had been told the social worker would bring a visitor to her family. The mother did not know today would be the day a prayer would be answered. As we entered the home, I said to the social worker, “today the direction of their lives changes forever.”
Two girls would come to LOH this day. I am so glad that I was not asked to say anything, because my struggle was to keep from crying. They were asked to collect their things. They each put a couple of clothing items in a bag, but their thread-bare clothing would never be worn again. Two bags of groceries were left with the family. Then the mother holding her baby climbed into the car with her two daughters. The other children would wait at home for their mother’s return.
As the car entered LOH, the students were singing. Immediately my thought was this must be what it’s like to be welcomed by the choir of angels at God’s heavenly gates. What did these two girls do to deserve this – nothing. This is the power of grace and hope at work in this world. Every girl that was singing had been in the place of these two children who had been at a point of utter hopelessness.
As her two daughters were welcomed by the girls of LOH, the mother stood weaping. Today her prayer was answered.
Within the hour, the two girls were showered and given new clothes and shoes. What a privilege to be a witness to answered prayer. You, people of Messiah, made this rescue possible.