To Give Light to Them that Sit in Darkness
February 13, 2010
The pain in her foot was unbearable; tears filled her eyes as she hobbled down the street to the meeting. This was the second week of meetings in Tamil Nadu, India and she did not want to miss them. The next night this lady returned in the same
condition. I could not believe that her family had not helped her. I asked my interpreter to find out about her. He informed me that she is a seventy-year-old widow named Sangitta who attends the Seventh-day Adventist church where we are holding meetings. She lives in her Hindu son’s home and does not know what is wrong with her foot.
We helped her home and talked with her family. They said they would take her to the government hospital where she could receive free treatment. Satisfied that we had done all we could do, we left her in the care of her family. The next evening, I stood in amazement as I watched this poor lady hobble into the meeting. After the meeting we found ourselves back in Sangitta’s home begging the family to help her. We told them we would pay for them to take a taxi and meet them at thehospital at 2:00 p.m. the next day. They agreed, so we left. My interpreter told me he would meet them and I should not worry. So believing the matter would be solved, I focused on other things. When we arrived in the village, I inquired about Sangitta. I was informed that my interpreter had waited for an hour and no one had come to the hospital. “What can I do Lord?” I thought as we walked back to Sangitta’s home, “She has a swollen foot, it’s been swollen for four days and her family won’t bring her to the hospital.”
Then the thought came to me to use clay. I looked around and saw nothing but cement. Where could I find some clay? A man led us to a mound of red brick dirt in his back yard. “Lord bless our humble efforts,” I prayed as I grabbed a handful of dirt and headed for Sangitta’s house. We found Sangitta at home with her daughter-in-law and informed her of our plan. I asked for a cup of water and a clean cloth, and then began to apply the clay to the foot.
Words cannot describe the blessing I received as I watched the daughter-in-law’s heart change. She became very interested in what I was doing for her mother-in-law and was very grateful that we had come. Overwhelming joy filled my heart as we headed back to prepare for our meeting. This experience reminded me of the text in the Bible, “Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fullness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.” Psalms 16:11.
The next day my family and I returned to see Sangitta. She sat with her daughter-in-law on the floor of her dimly lit room, with
a cast on her foot! Praise the Lord! Both Sangitta and the daughter-in-law were beaming. Because Sangitta did not want to miss any of the meetings, she had been walking to them on a broken foot. We were humbled to realize that through our simple acts of kindness God was able to reach the heart of a lost soul. We are weak, but He is strong. “Men and women have hardly begun to understand the true object of life. They are attracted by glitter and show. They are ambitious for worldly pre-eminence. To this the true aims of life are sacrificed. Life’s best things—simplicity, honesty, truthfulness, purity, integrity–cannot be bought or sold. They are as free to the ignorant as to the educated, to the humble laborer as to the honored statesman. For everyone God has provided pleasure that may be enjoyed by rich and poor alike—the pleasure found in cultivating pureness of thought and unselfishness of action, the pleasure that comes from speaking sympathizing words and doing kindly deeds. From those who perform such service the light of Christ shines to brighten lives darkened by many shadows.” Ministry of Healing, 198.
In 2007 our family had the privilege of working in India for five weeks. We saw a desperate need for a medical missionary/Bible training school and have been praying since that time that God would send someone to fill this need.
Since we don’t have any outstanding abilities, we assumed that God had someone else in mind that would answer the call and help with a school.
God led me to two passages; “Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you” John 15:16. “According to your faith, be it unto you.” Matthew 9:29.
The Lord continued to impress foreign missions upon my mind, but we could not see any possible way to go. In frustration I said, “Lord if you can make a way, I am willing to go.” We began to make plans expecting God to work miracles. “All heaven is in activity, and the angels of God are waiting to cooperate with all who will devise plans whereby souls for whom Christ died may hear the glad tidings of salvation.” Testimonies to the Church, vol. 6, 433.
Apparently my willingness to give God control has placed us in His accelerated faith-building course. In the past eight weeks we have had amazing, seemingly impassible roadblocks. But we have set our face like a flint and by God’s grace the way is opening. We have not yet completed this course, but we have learned that “Whatever is to be done at His command, may be accomplished in His strength. All His biddings are enablings.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 333.
Friends, God has great and mighty things to show anyone who will ask Him. He has called for laborers. Won’t you seek to know what he is asking you to do today? We learned that if we wait for all difficulties to disappear, we may miss the true joy that God wants us to experience.
I leave you with one last thought. “There are many who are reading the Scriptures who cannot understand their true import. All over the world men and women are looking wistfully to heaven. Prayers and tears and inquiries go up from souls longing for light, for grace, for the Holy Spirit. Many are on the verge of the kingdom, waiting only to be gathered in.” Acts of the Apostles, 109.
By Steve Rawlings, c/o Mission Projects International, PO Box 59656, Renton, WA 98058. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org