Aravind walked around barefoot in ragged, worn-out clothes. He carried his books in a plastic bag. The skinny 7 year old lived in a humble mud house with his parents. Aravind’s “normal” was generational abject poverty. His family was so poor they could not even afford to buy rice, so their diet was not only meager but also severely lacking in the nutritional value a young boy needs to sustain normal growth.
As is common among the poor, life for Aravind and his family was always complicated. His father, Hukka, was unable to find enough work locally to generate an income adequate to meet the most basic of his family’s needs. Because Hukka loved his family, he had to journey to a neighboring state to find employment. His long-distance commute meant he would be away from home for a month or more at a time, returning with wages he hoped would help his wife and son make it through his next absence. Yet, even what he was able to earn was not enough.
Then, something changed.
Because of the generosity of people halfway around the globe, Aravind was able to join a nearby Bridge of Hope center. The Gospel for Asia (GFA)-supported center provided him with a new school uniform, shoes, books, winter clothes and personal hygiene products—some of which he had never even see before.
He actually cried the first time he washed his hair with shampoo—and it wasn’t because the shampoo had gotten into his eyes. It was because he was experiencing the love of Jesus Christ.
That was just the beginning of the changes Aravind began to experience. The daily meals at the Bridge of Hope center helped this young man to gain weight and develop physical strength. With some medical attention from the Bridge of Hope staff and a diet rich in Vitamin-A, his eyesight began to improve.
Oh. One more thing. Aravind no longer carries his books in a flimsy, plastic bag. He joyfully carries them in his own Bridge of Hope backpack.
Aravind can now see clearly in the daytime and the evening. He can also see a future filled with hope because of Jesus’ love.
There are countless young boys and girls in Asia who suffer under the crushing burden of generational abject poverty. Please pray for GFA-supported Bridge of Hope centers, which are helping to demonstrate the love of Christ and to point the children to a new life.
To read more posts on Patheos on generational abject poverty, go here.
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