Who could ever forget the day Charles first walked into Jireh Children’s Home? His face looked like it was covered in chalk and his eyes were shell-shocked. Charles had been living in a faraway village where he had witnessed his mother kill his father.
His mother had reached her end that day as Charles’ father once again abused the family in his drunken stupor. Without thinking, she lifted a machete with both hands and split his head wide open. She then fled, leaving Charles bent over in a pool of blood holding his dying father.
We heard about Charles and immediately brought him into our children’s home. He was eleven-years-old at the time, and everything was so challenging. Charles was a loner and so withdrawn after spending most of his childhood herding cattle in complete isolation . . . and he was so behind in school that he felt inadequate.
But as Charles began to learn about God’s love for him, he began to heal and take advantage of every opportunity he was given, especially gaining an education. Year after year, Charles would sit at the dinner table working on his school lessons long after all the other children had gone to bed. Within three years Charles had caught up and was among the top students in his class.
Today, Charles is sixteen years old. Tears well up in my eyes when I think of what God has done in his life. He is now at a boarding school with nearly 1,000 students, and the administration will tell you Charles stands out. He is mature, strong, and driven. He is a servant leader. Whether fulfilling his role as the big brother in our children’s home or leading a chapel service, you can see the joy of the Lord in Charles and his compassion for other people.
Charles is working hard to become a doctor so he can help hurting people. It's hard to believe but this young man is on track to achieve his dream. All praise to Jesus, the one who has the power to transform!
Written by Betty Jo McLelland
Charles recently told the other children who have been blessed through EWT partners: “Who are we? For God to have picked each one of us from among the many suffering children . . . we cannot thank God enough other than pray for our sponsors for God to bless them.”