Street scene at Nairobi’s Mathare slum

A Word from David

Nairobi, Kenya has no shortage of slums filled with rusted tin shanties, open sewers, and lean children. This morning I walked the mud streets of one of those slums named Mathare. It is home to thousands of people, but I came to visit just one of them. Her name is Beth Wanjiru Ngugi. I’ve known her for several years. She’s a sister in Christ who has just received her third consecutive small-business loan from Heaven’s Family. Beth’s business has prospered so much that she paid the first two loans off ahead of schedule!

As I took Beth’s portrait outside her tiny shop, hundreds of Mathare’s residents streamed by, most of them poorer than her—a river of human need. Helping Beth seemed like less than a drop in the bucket. I reminded myself of a story I once heard of a little boy who was seen tossing beached starfish, one by one, back into the ocean. When an observer told him that saving a few starfish out of the thousands that were stranded didn’t make much difference, he picked up one starfish and replied, “It makes a difference to this one.” Pitching it back into the ocean, he continued on his mission.

As I looked at Beth, I was glad that we hadn’t become discouraged by comparing our resources to the world’s ocean of need. So was Beth. — David

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