To believe, even though shredded, even though crazy and impossible...this is where faith goes to live or to die.
To put it all on the line. To bear hope. To look into a mother's eyes and tell her you believe her dead little girl can live....It is one of the hardest things I've had to do. It is still hard.
A baby died last night. Something I will never get used to. Even though this is the fourth human being in my community of women to die this month. Aids. Starvation. All just another word for stealing.
But this is not just any baby. This is a baby I held in my arms. A baby whose life I thought would be saved.
On Friday, I noticed one of our mothers who was making necklaces had the thinnest armed baby I had ever seen strapped to her back. Thin like the Ethiopian hunger commercials I used to watch as a child. Thin, as in death sentence. It was the first time she had brought her.
We called her into my office and found out that she has Aids. There was no money for formula. So her mother made a choice. Breastfeed her today and she lives. Hardly a choice at all. But the baby is starving now, refusing to eat. At first I think we should rush her to the hospital, but the mother says she's already been that day and the baby just needs to eat. So we buy her formula and a dropper. And we pray. The whole time this little one is pushing my hand away from her head. And I think, “This one is strong. She will live.” Come back Monday, we say, if she isn't better and we'll go to the hospial again.
On Sunday night, just a few hours too short, that little girl died.
I fall to my knees and cry. I open my bible to John and the first thing I read is from the story of Lazarus: “Didn't I tell you that you would see God's glory, if you believe?”
And then I remember a story. In Mozambique, a baby dead for 3 days, comes back to life. I feel the buyoncy of faith begin to rise again.
I hold onto that testimony because it bolsters me. It makes me believe for the impossible, when my unbelief creeps in. I don't have enough faith for this. And I need the faith of others around the world to ignite in sparks across the dark landscape.
Today, we sang. We sang worship songs through mud-tracked tears. We prayed. We asked and we commanded. We were desperate. We were joyful. We were angry. We were at peace. We hugged. We held onto a mother with a broken heart. And four women got saved because of all the love there between us.
And a baby did not get up and live.
But I am not giving up. I'm fasting and praying for this baby's life and if another dies tomorrow I will carry this tattered heart to the edge of insanity and I will ask again.
I don't know how to do this. It doesn't seem there is a book called Resurrection 101: The Tricks of the Trade. All I have is a story. And a Jesus I believe in.
Please pray for little baby Abetty. That she will live. We need a mirace.
And if that's too much for some of you, then pray the military barracks will let us at least lay hands on her body.
Pray for her mother Blandine, that the Comforter would come to her.
Pray that the Congolese community would be blown apart by God's love