Yesterday, we all had difference experiences as we walked through the wetlands of Masipumalele. Masi is a township that houses around 35,000 people that live on about 100 acres. Before entering this area, we were told to stay together or we could become lost in the maze of tin "storage sheds". (If you go to Sweet Sleep's Facebook page, you'll see the pictures of this area).
As one who is deaf, my experience was in silence. Therefore, my other senses are heightened, especially sight and smell. As I looked into the eyes of the people there, I saw hopelessness like never before, even in children and babies. It was actually quite surreal.
There was no smell of nature...flowers, trees, or grass. It was mostly dirt, wood and tin. The hopelessness was understandable. The hope of Jesus and His promises is desperately needed. Fortunately the home where we built 4 beds, a local church family had adopted them and were very much involved in their lives.
As the grandmother (the primary caregiver along with her husband) saw the new mattresses, she was overwhelmed with emotion. Not long before we arrived to Cape Town, this family was sleeping on the ground. Then to receive 4 new beds, mattresses and bedding, it gave them a glimpse of hope through their gratefulness. However, their eyes still showed great despair...for the poverty was overwhelming. At least now, we know they are resting better and remembering God's love for them through His provision of the beds and through His love we displayed by words and actions.
Honestly, this blog is hard to write because nothing I say will come close to expressing what we saw and experienced. Some things have to be experienced first hand to understand. Though not everyone will have this experience, we can all pray for every family in Masi to know Jesus and to be adopted by someone or a family, and to be lifted out of such extreme poverty. Remember, I am sharing about our experience with just one family out of 35,000 people...