The Joy of Living

Last week in Sunday School, one of the boys was talking about his new baby brother, who had been born the night before. He was super excited to be a big brother the second time over, and was telling everyone, multiple times, the full names of both his brothers. This sparked a HUGE amount of excitement from a young boy from Africa, who informed us that his name was from the Bible. I asked him if he has siblings, and he said he had a four-year-old sister, whose name was also from the Bible, but that his brother had died and he had forgotten his name.

I don’t know much about this family, how long they’ve been in the US (I don’t think its been more than a year or two, as the boy still has an accent), and I certainly don’t know what happened in this case, but it just brought back memories from my stay in Africa and how commonplace death was, even the death of children. For these children and their parents, it would be an unimaginable tragedy to loose a child. For families in Africa, it is still a tragedy, but it is not as rare, or unexpected, as it is in America. I’m so glad we don’t have to wonder if our children will die from contaminated water, from AIDs, or simply because we don’t have enough to feed our children, but this situation reminded me of yet another reason I love the African people and culture so much — because of the enormous value they place on life.

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