We made our way through the mud and cow dung into the tiny house. There curled up on the bed was a boy. His mom said he was 18 years old, but he didn’t look bigger than my 10-year-old daughter. One foot was at a funny angle and his legs were bent and thin.

“He keeps breaking his bones,” his mom said. “This last time the hospital said that there was nothing they could do, and they didn’t cast his broken leg.”

This boy has cerebral palsy and because of his inability to move, the bones in his legs have grown weaker and fragile and so they break easily. He is in a lot of pain because of his broken bones that are unable to heal correctly because they have not been cast. His mom and dad lovingly care for him. Their love and care is evident in how clean he is and that he has no pressure sores as one would expect from a boy like this, and no signs of respiratory infection. His parents have meticulously cared for him and prevented these extra complications from happening. He is their only child, and this is a tragedy in a culture where children are their parents’ security in old age. 

The lady who brought us to visit brought diapers to help the mom care for him. Our advice to the mom is to keep turning him from side to side and get him into a sitting position if she can do so without causing him too much pain. We suggest putting a pillow between his legs to keep them apart and reduce the stiffness so that she can keep the area clean and dry. 

Then they gave us permission to pray for them. We are surprised by this. This family are Muslims. There is a spiritual battle going on in the village where they live. Mosques are being built in every little village in the area and the people are being told to become more religious.

But they give us permission to pray and so we pray that God would give strength and wisdom to this family on how best to care for their son. We pray for healing and blessing on this boy and the unspoken prayer in all our hearts is that this family would come to know the True Hope who came to die for us all.

As we leave, I feel an urgency. This boy’s life could have been so different if we had seen him 16 years ago and had told his parents to keep him moving and standing so that his bones wouldn’t grow weak and fragile. Would he then have been able to learn and reach his full potential?

As we visit homes in the village and meet with children with cerebral palsy and their parents, the memory of this boy in pain gives me energy and impetus to keep going, to keep teaching and showing and training as much as I am able, so that other kids can have a chance to be well cared for and helped. 

Our experience with this boy encourages us to keep smiling, to keep telling people that besides what the culture tells them – they are loved by God, not cursed, and their love is seen by their children.

Beth is from the global South, and she loves the ocean and cold Christmas dinner on a hot day around the pool. She is married to an adventurer, and they have three wonderfully unique children.

Share this Resource

Leave a Reply

You might also like:

Business opportunity Central Asia    Go & Live    As soon as possibleIf you are talented in business and have a heart for the unreached, we’re looking for you! After being introduced to the culture and learning a local language you can set up a business in your area of expertise.

The type of business could be in agriculture, consulting, import & export, small manufacture, cafe and many other opportunities.... what business are YOU in?

Full Details
Cosmetology Instructor Central Asia    Go & Live    As soon as possibleIn teaching cosmetology to deaf students you will join a team that is empowering and equipping a marginalized people group as they positively impact their lives and those in their families. It will be your job to design and implement lesson plans that will help your students to effectively learn the skills needed to be an excellent hairdresser, make-up artist, and/ or manicurist.
Full Details
Teachers (Elementary and Secondary) Central Asia    Go & Live    As soon as possibleLocated in a Central Asian city, this multicultural Christian school has openings for elementary and secondary teachers--particularly kindergarten, grade 2, and middle school science. Teachers certified or trained in IGCSE and AP curriculum are especially encouraged to apply.
Full Details
Teachers Central Asia    Go & Live    As soon as possibleTake that teaching diploma and invest in the lives of ‘missionary kids’ along the Silk Road.  Whether you’re a recent graduate or come with a lifetime of experience, whatever discipline you teach, MKs aged 5-18 are waiting for you!  You’ll play a vital role in the growth of the church as you release parents for ministry. We’re looking for teachers who are learners too, as you step out of your comfort zone and experience life in a unique culture.
Full Details
Short-Term Outreach Coordinator Central Asia    Go & Live    As soon as possibleWe are looking for someone with good organizational and communication skills and a passion for reaching unreached peoples to oversee our short-term outreach department.
You would be working with a multicultural team, based in a large city.  As this is not a full-time role you would have plenty of opportunity for your own personal ministry alongside organizing the short-term outreaches.

Full Details
Korean Language and Culture Instructor Central Asia    Go & Live    As soon as possibleAs an Instructor at the Centre for Korean Language and Culture you will join efforts with other team members to build relationships with people from various schools, colleges, universities, and companies. It will be your job to make and implement lesson plans that will help your students to effectively learn the Korean language. You will be involved in organizing cultural learning experiences to teach about Korean culture.
Full Details
School teachers Central Asia    Go & Live    As soon as possibleOur missionary kid (MK) school in the heart of Central Asia needs teachers for grades K-9. We're looking for teachers committed to the nurture and growth of our children--caring professionals who both know their subject area and live out their faith. Come and make a difference in the lives of our students!
Full Details
Seeker Ministry Facilitator Central Asia    Go & Live    As soon as possibleEngage with students seeking a deeper relationship with God through discussions which help them build a biblical worldview and live according to the scriptures. Take part in organizing a new believers' worship service each week.
Full Details
School Administrators Central Asia    Go & Live    As soon as possibleLocated in a Central Asian city, this multicultural K-12 Christian school has the following administrator openings: elementary principal, secondary principal.
Full Details