The Loss of a Child

One evening, during our initial outreach to the village of Matipwili in March 2018, I had an encounter with a young man who followed me into a house. I turned around and noticed him, and he began to speak. We had one problem…he spoke Swahili, and I spoke English and neither of us could understand one another. I motioned for him to follow me to a friend of mine who could translate. He began to tell me of his belief in Jesus Christ and how he wanted to use his talents of music to reach others for the kingdom of Christ. I asked this young man what his current relationship was like with God. He told me that he and his wife had been seeking the Lord, but that they were both hurting. Upon digging a little deeper he begins to share that their young son had asked to go out to play one day. The mother dressed him and sent him to go play. They went to check on him a short time later and they found their son hanging from a tree. He had slipped and his shirt had caught on the branch and caused him to suffocate. I explained that I cannot begin to know what they were feeling, as I have two boys of my own. But that I could somehow understand his pain. My sister had passed away when I was a teenager, and watching the pain that my father went through gave me some context to the pain I saw first hand through the eyes of my father. I explained to him, that no matter how much we feel we love our children, the love of our Heavenly Father has no comparison and that he needs to understand that he is in the arms of a loving God. A place where he will no longer have pain, or hunger, or sadness. In the end, He is right where we all long to be one day. He broke into violent sobbing and cried on my shoulder as I prayed over him. Later in the evening, we were able to witness him moving through the crowd praying over other villagers and speaking the truth of a loving Savior. Praise God.

Steve Wood