I was running around town this morning trying to get as much done as possible in the time that I had. As usual, my list of things to do was much longer than the time I had.
I had just hopped back into the car, turned to pay the parking attendant, when my world stopped.
There beside my car was a boy about 6 or 7 years old. He wasn't asking me for money as many others were doing or trying to sell me something, he was just standing there.
I tried to just move on with life, but I couldn't. I turned my face to look at him again. On the left side of his mouth was a something huge. I don't even know how to describe it as I really couldn't figure it out even when I took a close look at it. Maybe he had a HUGE abscess or maybe he got cut somehow out of the corner of his mouth. Whatever happened, it had bled alot, was caked back together with dried blood and had something that looked is vaseline smeared all over it.
I asked him where is mother was. She was at home, about 30 minutes from where we were.
I just sat in the car. I didn't know what to do.
My first reaction was to get him to a clinic myself and see what I could do. My mind kicked in and I wondered what his mom would think if I took her young child to the clinic, What would the doctors say to me? And my Kinyarwanda is not good enough to got me through or out of situtions like this.
I gave him some money.
As I drove away, the tears spilled over and I cried.
From the backseat, my dear Isabella asked, 'Mommy, why are you crying?'
I explained to her about the little boy, that he was sick and he needed a doctor but his mommy didn't have enough money to take him. I told her that I had given him money to help.
She then said, 'But Mommy, I pray for people who are poor everyday that God will help them.'
Awhile later in town, we were confronted again by about six women begging for money as we were leaving a parking area. I gave to four but not to two as I didn't have money to give them.
From the backseat came a distressed, stern, almost angry voice, 'Mommy, but what if one of those you didn't give money to was the little boy's mommy?'
I assured Isabella that not one of them was the boys mommy and reminded her that I had given the boy money to give to his mommy... and then I cried again.
And tears are spillling all over the computer as I write this.
In the last weeks, some different people have been asking me how I do it? How I live life in Rwanda among the poor everyday?
Those questions have been rolling around in my head as I don't have an answer... hence I haven't answered their emails.
Most days, I do know that God is strength, that God is the one who ultimately holds each of us on this earth in his hand, that I need to be living generously and being Jesus hands and feet.
But today... I don't think I'm doing it. Feeling so helpless for this boy... oh God, help!