A Large Work–Starting Small

The morning at the Children’s Home was HOT, and as it approached the heat of noon, it seemed like torture to ask them, “Do you want water? Yes or No — Look at the ‘yes’ hand if you want water.” 


Of course they wanted water–the sun was blazing and there was barely a breeze. I wanted water. Were I in the States, I would have brought a sugar-free blended coffee drink with me in a disposable cup, and I probably would have thrown it away before I finished it. This realization scraped at my heart as I doled out water, one teaspoon at a time. Each child smiling, giggling or sighing in relief at their portion. I was undone…overwhelmed.

I prayed for relief from the heat–a cooling breeze, or rain–relief for the children. I’m an able-bodied adult capable of independently seeking relief. Hours later, it started to thunder and as the boys and I hustled to get the laundry off the line, one asked, “What happens to the children when they become adults?” 

My thoughts raced to my Aunt Janice (who died a year ago) and the recommendation to institutionalize her, and a grandfather I never met who instead, sent her to a private school two states away–changing the trajectory of her life, her heart, her sphere of influence.

The notion that the needs of the children were too great to make a difference ensconced my soul, there was no benefactor to provide one-on-one assistance. Then my prayer was answered: the rain poured down–like tears from heaven, more abundant than my own.

“This is a large work I’ve called you into, but don’t be overwhelmed by it. It’s best to start small. Give a cool cup of water to someone who is thirsty, for instance. The smallest act of giving or receiving makes you a true apprentice. You won’t lose out on a thing.” Mark 10:42 MSG

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