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Grace for the Day [A Disabilities Ministry Blog]

25 Feb

Grace for the Day [A Disabilities Ministry Blog]

Grace’s one room, one window rented home (which looks deceptively large because Grace is so small)

Grace for the Day

Carmen’s 1st trip blog from Africa

Dear Friends,

Whenever I wander through a foreign land, I try to identify with the stark reality that so many live on a razor’s edge, never knowing one day to the next how their needs will be met…if at all. Without total faith in our Lord I easily become paralyzed in heartbreak. I ask for your prayers to direct these emotional floodwaters into the channels of the Lord’s will so that I can be His instrument and your servant to meet the needs of the most vulnerable.

Today God’s grace afforded me the opportunity to witness His love through the eyes of a beautiful Kenyan woman by the same name: Grace. Having been afflicted with polio as a child Grace, now 37, has struggled with many hardships and disappointments. Due in part to her disability, she has never had the opportunity to marry. Twelve years ago the untimely death of her sister and brother-in-law left 3 small boys as orphans. Grace picked up the pieces of this tragedy and bore them on her own slight, 4-foot-tall tilted frame.

She has worked hard tending a small vegetable stand in a local market that she walks to daily. Her meager earnings barely put food on her table for herself and 3 nephews, but she often wonders where she’ll find the 3,000 shillings ($30) to pay her rent for their one-room home—a room that is used for living, cooking, eating, sleeping and studying for 4 people—about the size of a full-size Buick. She was evicted once for tardy payment, and she has not yet turned in February’s rent, and as of this writing it is now the 19th. Another huge concern weighing on Grace: she needs to replace a full-length leg brace that is worn out and no longer fits correctly.

Grace, happy that the market has been busy today, flashes her priceless smile

The desperation of Grace’s situation is quickly put into proper perspective when we talk about what God can do—and witness her beautiful, contagious smile that lights up the room! I’ve learned that she needs $70 to purchase a new leg brace, and $1,000 to purchase land and build a simple house for her family so that she no longer has to worry about being evicted. If you’d like to help with any of Grace’s needs, in whole or in any amount, click here.

We may not be able to remedy every situation, but God is leading us to help change lives one smile at a time. Today that life is Grace’s. Thanks for reading and joining in my journey.

Because of Him,

Carmen Parise
Director, Disabilities Ministry

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