It was a beautiful sunny morning when we started our trip to a very remote area of our country’s southern province to open a new Implementing Church Partner. We were a cheerful team of six staff, four men and two ladies.
As we drove south, we made jokes all the way, not knowing exactly what we would face at the child development center site.
When we arrived, a very quiet audience of about 400 people—children, their guardians, and some church members—were waiting for us. After a short introduction, we were presented with children for whom we were supposed to fill out the case studies and take photos.
At that moment, we could have been consumed by our tears had we not held them back just to keep our dignity.
Among the 200 children, 33 had obvious signs of severe malnutrition. Some had swollen bellies and cheeks, others had lost their hair, and many others had turned brown. Some had difficulties just standing for the photo. A few days later, one of them actually died as a result of malnutrition.
On our way back, all the jokes had faded away. Instead, we shared about what we had just witnessed. We made a decision to request quick intervention to rescue these children. The church acted upon this as a matter of urgency, and children were rescued from death.
You cannot imagine the joy I experienced when, two years later, I processed their updated images. I could hardly recognize any of them. They were completely transformed. They were smart, healthy, happy, and full of smiles! No doubt, God was smiling as well at this tremendous change!
This ministry is a real response to Paul’s call to the Ephesians. He urged them to find out what pleases God and do it. I feel privileged to serve in a ministry that touches God’s heart.
Find out what pleases the Lord. —Ephesians 5:10, NIV
Prayer: Dear God, help us find out what pleases you most in our daily activities, and give us the strength to do it. Amen!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Esperance Kandera works as a Senior Sponsor and Donor Services Associate for Compassion Rwanda.
Read all the One in Spirit devotionals.