"Reva, come and see this boy!" my husband, J.R., said with much concern in his voice.
I turned around and saw a group of young people outside the church (in Mindanao, Philippines) but did not know which one J.R. was talking about.
"Which boy? What about him?"
"Right there. The one standing on the right. Something's wrong with him." I searched the crowd again but couldn't see who J.R. wanted me to see. Suddenly, from the shadows, a small face emerged. Unable to see well, I walked to the boy with J.R. following behind me.
My heart sank. In front of me, a small, innocent but distorted face gave me a quick glance. The sad eyes then looked down, seemingly ashamed. Tears started to well up in my eyes. I looked at J.R., and a tear rolled from his cheeks. We had so much pity for the young lad, for a huge tumor is growing between his eyes. Due to its size, his eyes had grown far apart and could barely open. Definitely, his opportunities in life will be so limited if he doesn't get help. Or his life could also be in jeopardy.
I asked the boy to move toward the light so I could see him better. He slowly did. I could tell he was quite ashamed about how he looked.
I took many pictures of him while the rest of the crowd watched. I later found out his name was Jezreel and he was 12 years old.
"How fast is the tumor growing?" I asked.
The look of hopefulness showed in Jezreel's eyes. He must have been praying for the day when someone could give him help. Before we left, J.R. placed money in Jezreel's hands. The boy gave us a smile.
The next afternoon, we visited Jezreel in the little hut where he lives with his older brother. He was very happy to see us. He had a glow in his eyes that matched his sweet smile. His older brother gave us bananas, which he bought with the money J.R. gave Jezreel the night before. It was Jezreel's way of thanking us. Since Jezreel spent the money we gave him, J.R. gave him some more money.
On Sabbath afternoon, we saw Jezreel again. His head hung down, his chin touching his chest as he stood among the others lined up for baptism. He felt shameful because he probably thought everyone was staring only at him.
When Jesus lived on this earth thousands of years ago, He had so much compassion for the people, especially for those with illnesses and disabilities: the lame, the leper, the blind and many others. He went about healing the sick. Likewise, Jesus wants us to help unfortunate people like Jezreel. We can help by putting our resources together.
I believe God placed helpless folks like Jezreel around us so we could show our love for humanity. And when we do, we also give our love to God. It says in Matthew 25:40, "And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto Me."
I wrote about Jezreel because I want to ask help from you for his surgery. He can have his operation in Manila. Imagine if many of us will give, even just a small amount, and we put our money together so Jezreel can have his operation and have a better future. Any donation from $1 to whatever will be greatly appreciated and a tax-deductible receipt will be given immediately. Please let me hear from you. My e-mail address is: firstname.lastname@example.org