I paint pictures of my country which feature the good, the bad and the ugly because we are living in a real world and reality hurts a lot.
Man dies of hunger and cold... We read stories like these nearly everyday and see TV reports about them.
The Hindustan Times newspaper reported on Jan 29th that a Muslim man named Majid died of hunger in a village close to our state capital.
He had been without a job since the past 3 years and was eeking out a living as a village barber.He and his wife Mehernissa have 10 children.I have to add here that poor, impovershed and uneducated people cannot make the connection between poverty and the number of children they bring into the world.
The government has a programme by which people living below the poverty line should get rations.But due to red tape and corruption it doesn 't get to them.
Majid 's family had been hungry for 4 days.Mehernissa went to a neighbour and asked her for some wheat flour.The neighbour gave her half a kilo (about one pound) of flour with which she made chapatis and gave to her family.Majid did not eat and asked his wife to give his share to his hungry children.At nightfall he covered his young ones with the only quilt they possesed and went and sat outside his hut.In the morning they found him dead.Neighbours pooled money for his funeral.
Now what is the widow to do with her children? After all this took place the government and NGOs came to their aid and gave them food and money.But the tragedy had already taken place.
The need is so great and our resources meagre but we try to do our tiny bit.Everyday we give away vegetables and other things to poor people we come into contact with. One just cannot turn away. In India nothing is wasted.Maintaining our vegetable garden is costly and I complain rather loudly but one of the reasons for having it is sharing the produce with others.
Jesus said; I was hungry and you gave me food.
I just had to share this story because it broke my heart.
My parents have had a soft heart for the needy.We are not rich but God has supplied all our needs .A month back a friend told us something we never knew.
Years ago my parents were helping a young widow with 2 small girls get a high school education.This young woman came to visit us just before Christmas.Her daughters had been pestering her to buy bangles for them but she did not have any money .Before she left my parents gave her some cash and she was so joyful , she went to the bazar and got bangles and gifts for her girls.She shared this with the mutual friend who told us this story.She has a job and is a grandmother.
Although we Christians are earthen vessels, cracked in many places we have to let the light shine through the cracks.