Days in developing nations typically start earlier than other parts of the world. Situated just a few degrees south of the equator, Rwandans are up bright and early every day. In the military, we called this getting up at “zero-dark-thirty!”
For example, this morning, as I walked around the campus at 6:10 AM, I found Solange and Bernadette working hard in the kitchen. It wasn’t long before I ran into David, one of our hospitality workers.
Then, as I walked up the stairs to our multi-use space, I gave fist bumps to students in uniform waiting for more of their friends to show up. One of them had his notebook open and was working on homework.
Oh, and did I mention this was on a Saturday morning?
Light is such a critical factor in the lives of our students and families. Many of them do not have the ability to “work” in the dark because they live in mud-walled homes without electricity.
Here is a fun experiment for you to try at home:
Go into your closet, at night, sit down on the floor and try to find the solution to a quadratic equation by using algebraic identities. Without having a light on.
Too dark to read or write anything?
Okay, we’ll give you a little help. Maybe you can use the light from a small candle sitting on the floor beside you to help illuminate the room a bit? That should work well, right?
This is similar to the lighting situation of many of the homes our students live in. It is dark. Very dark.
That is why we were so excited to work with a generous investor to distribute solar lamps to many of our most vulnerable families. During the next two weeks, I’ll show you videos from our visits to some of these homes at night.
Light is often used in Scripture as a symbol. Christians are called to “walk in the light” and to “share light” with others. In Psalms 18:28, David wrote a song celebrating his escape from King Saul: “You, LORD, keep my lamp burning; my God turns my darkness into light.”
God loves to light it up! Whatever situation you are facing, we believe that God can bring light to show the way. That doesn’t always mean He will change the situation, but He will be with you as you journey through it. He promises to show us the way, even when the path is dark: “Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path” (Psalm 119:105).
Next week we’ll share more about how one of our interns is evaluating the effectiveness of this solar lamp project.
In the meantime, how can you be a “glimmer of light” this week to someone who may be really struggling?