Wednesday, July 31, 2013

A defining moment

I never expected it to be so emotional. He was only four, and had no clue what was about to happen. I sat beside him in the doctor's office on a cracked leather red couch. He was wearing a pink sweatshirt and Cars pajama bottoms. He cried when the nurse pricked his finger. Cried quietly as we waited. I knew in that moment that what we were about to find out would determine so much about his life. Whether or not he would live with monthly doctor visits, medicine, and hospital trips. Three weeks ago, his mother died from HIV. He now lives with his grandmother and was facing the same diagnosis as his mother.

The nurse showed Emily and I a chart while we waited. Two lines meant positive. One line negative. My heart pounded. I fought unexpected tears and prayed. I wanted so badly for him to be okay. Minutes later, the nurse held out the test that held his small pool of blood. Negative.

Negative! I was overwhelmed with joy. We clapped and thanked God. Rejoiced that there would be no monthly doctor visits and medicine and sickness.

After driving them home, we visited at his compound. His grandmother smiled, grateful as we gave her some beans, peanuts, tomatoes, and onions to help out, as well as soap and medicine for a skin issue the  little boy has. She shared more about herself. She's a widow and is also raising two other grandchildren. Her family lives far away and it's hard to make ends meet. But she is happy today. Her grandson is well.

As I gave her the gift of food, I told her that it wasn't from me. That many people, all over the world, had given money to help people just like her. I told her that she was blessing her grandson by taking him in and caring for him, something that was very important to God.

We minister to many who deal with HIV on a daily basis. Widows, orphans, mothers, young people. Life is hard, but there is hope. Hope in a God who loves them.

"You saw me before I was born.
Every day of my life was recorded in your book.
Every moment was laid out
before a single day had passed.

How precious are your thoughts about me, O God.
They can not be numbered." Psalm 139:16-17

To find out how you can get involved and make a difference with us, visit The ECHO Project


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