Jesus and the Leper

“A man with leprosy came and knelt before him and said, ‘Lord, if you are willing, you can make me clean.’ Jesus reached out His hand and touched the man.  ‘I am willing,’ he said.  ‘Be clean!’  Immediately he was cured of his leprosy.”  Matthew 8:2 – 3

Leprosy is definitely one of those diseases that I never have encountered much, nor did I ever expect to.  Cancer, of course.  HIV, yes.   Pneumonia, sure.  TB, check.   But, leprosy?   I thought that was something left to the Father Damiens or Brennan Mannings of the world who later in their lives moved into leper colonies to care for those suffering.  Yet, now we are moving into an area that has become widely known because of its history with leprosy.

Korah (or Kore’ is how the locals pronounce it) was a village founded 70 plus years ago when an American missionary doctor started a leprosy hospital outside of the city limits of Addis Ababa at the request of Emperor Hailie Selassie.   The area around the hospital became a place of refuge for the thousands of people suffering from leprosy who flocked to the hospital from the countryside in hopes of getting well. Read More


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The Place of Children

“At that time the disciples came to Jesus and asked, ‘Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?’ He called a little child and had him stand among them. And he said, ‘I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whoever welcomes a little child like this in my name welcomes me. But if anyone causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a large millstone hung around his neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea.’” Matthew 18: 1 – 5

I am amazed at what God has been doing in my heart concerning children and their importance in His eyes. I have always believed that they have value in God’s eyes and of the importance to protect both the born and the unborn as vulnerable human beings made in God’s image. Yet, I still held a form of prejudice toward them. I was in a way like the disciples above. I saw that children had their place in a child’s world, but then someday they would finally become responsible adults and could have a place and a voice and a contribution to give at that point in time. I am sorry to say, that even as a father of 4, I overlooked the importance of children. Read More