One evening, as Nils sat outside the hostel near the stadium, a man approached him and asked if he was with Mercy Ships. When Nils said yes, the man sat down and began to share a health concern and ask when the Africa Mercy would arrive and begin screening patients. After a brief give and take the man began to talk about the war and a little of his experience. He pointed to the hills to the southwest of the stadium and talked about how troops fired artillery from them. The stadium was filled with people looking for sanctuary and the troops fired over the stadium at rebel locations beyond the stadium. Although the stadium was not hit, he remembered the fear of the evening. He also recounted the number of relatives who died in the conflict and the grief he still carries. Although Nils could not help this man personally, he and the team did have the opportunity to help another group of war victims. Children at the Cheshire House.The children at Cheshire House have polio. During the war vaccination’s were interrupted and as a result these kids are considered victims of the conflict. At Cheshire House they get an education and are supported through high school. Several are enrolled at the local university and hope to gain degrees in Business or other related fields. It’s amazing what a dedicated staff can do when it sees each child as created in the image of God.While there the team helped with projects such as painting, but it wasn’t long before the kids (and staff) were pitching right in to help.There were several things that stood out from the time, but perhaps this in particular: a victim of war is not beyond the healing touch of God’s grace.
And that grace is most usually delivered through people willing to extend themselves on behalf of others.
[thanks Liz and Larry for photos!]