In Swahili we will greet each other today with the words "Amefufuka" and reply, "Amefufuka kweli" ("He has risen" "He has risen truly"). This week is THE week in our Faith Walk of following Jesus. With out the resurrection, we are without hope. Truly without hope, without meaning to our lives.
I reflected on that even more yesterday when I received a call from the father of a heart patient of mine. We discovered last month that he has a congenital defect in his heart that needs repair. We were blessed to have ultrasound to get more information and then sent on to experts/friends at Mayo Clinic. I contacted a surgeon at a large hospital 12 hours north of here and they agreed to do the surgery free. Ufunuo, the name of the 2-9/12 yr old boy means "Revelation". Things were set for mid April. Then I got the call from his dad. I expected to just catch up on how things were in the village and if they were ready to go. He relayed the news to me that Ufunuo had died on Tuesday…I was so not expecting that.
We had all been so excited thinking that once repaired he would likely live a normal life. I can still see his face as we did repeated ultrasounds to confirm what his defect was. His face as he was scared. I remember he and his dad going home from the hospital with hope. And then Tuesday…I can only imagine the pain that his dad and mom and family are dealing with. But then I remembered that his dad clearly knew and had experienced the life changing experience of faith in the resurrected Jesus Christ. I had talked to him about that in the course of daily rounds. He knew his son was very sick, but he had hope.
As they often say here "katakana na mapenzi ya Mungu" (according to the will of God"). Sounds a bit fatalistic but it's not. It is faith that God is indeed God, and that he is Sovereign over all. I don't like at all the fact that Ufunuo has died. But I do have faith that God knows what he is doing. I do know that Ufunuo's father has peace amidst that sorrow that he will see his son again. And I know, with out a doubt, that some day I will be standing before the throne of God worshipping Jesus Christ along with Ufunuo, his dad, my dad, and so many more!
I close with this Swahili phrase we often say after morning chapel. "Yesu Kristo, Tumaini yeti" (Jesus Christ, our Hope")
Praying all of you have a blessed Easter Sunday and that your hearts are full of the hope that comes from knowing Jesus Christ.
Larry and Sally