Monday, February 22, 2010

The Leperosy Colony

Before Kaiya was born it was on my heart to dedicate her to the Lord in a place of ministry that closely related to that of Mother Theresa.

When God opened the door for my team to go to a small Leprosy colony on the side of a road...I was excited. They were a beautiful people with radiant smiles, missing fingers, and tragic stories. One teenager shared how he had recently lost both his parents to the disease, another man shared how he could still walk but now he could no longer feel his legs.

Perhaps the one I was most drawn to was the mother with one of her sons locked to the wall. We learned that the boy's father had leprosy and was on the street begging. As we interacted with the family I felt like we should pray for him. The mother granted us permission, and then a conflict of emotions began to war up inside of me. I wanted to pray for him, but could I touch him when I prayed for him. I couldn't believe that those thoughts even entered my mind. I have always been a risk taker, but this felt different. I was afraid. What if I got this disease, what if my kids did,...etc. It was at that moment that I remembered a passage I had read earlier that day. Jesus not only held lepers but he touched them. So we laid our hands on the boy as he wildly began to grab for my face and glasses as we prayed. When we finished praying. The war continued as I got out my hand sanitizer after leaving the colony. It was a surreal encounter. I have always "preached" that we need to reach out to the untouchables, but I actually think that was the first time that I had actually done it. It was a humbling experience, one that reminded me that I still have a ways to go to be like Jesus.

I hope that one day Kaiya can teach her Daddy how to better love the untouchables.