Monthly Archives: December 2011

Watching People Help Themselves

I heard from our worker this morning that his daughter (who was bitten by a rabid dog last Sunday night) is doing better and better.  She slept well last night, and is in school today, in part because exams start tomorrow. Praise God!
But there were two people at his church bitten by the dog (the other 26 people go elsewhere, or not at all), and I was anxious to know what happened to the other as well.  She was a widow who was bitten on her way to a prayer meeting (I think Sunday morning), and she had to money for the vaccine. As I first heard her story, it broke my heart to think of a widow in this war-torn country, who would die of a dog bite because she couldn’t afford the (highly subsidized) $75 for the vaccine.  I wanted to help, and I asked what she would do.  Our worker said that the church was taking up a collection, and they would see what they would do.
I wasn’t inspired by that answer, imagining that the church might come up with $10, but nothing like what was needed.  I’ve been thinking a lot about trying to help the poor, but causing damage, and I didn’t want my issues (including my desire to help) to make things worse than they already were –but I wanted to do something.  By the end of the day, I resolved to challenge them to come up with $50, and I would cover the rest.   That seemed like a nice balance of doing something, yet not taking over what they might be able to do for themselves.  But I would need to wait and see what they could (and would) do first…
But today, when I asked, I found that the church collection received $40, and the family pitched in to cover the rest! I was so glad to see God caring for the widow through his church, and doing it without a hand out for help. I’m a bit sad to not have helped, but it is better this way, I think.  The church now knows more of what it can do to help itself, the woman now has another reason to thank God for His provision, and her family has seen that the church really does care for them (I don’t know how many are Christian).  And I get to know that this woman, attacked on her way to pray, will not die because of it.