Tuesday, February 5, 2013

The Medicine Cabinet

I'm sick today. I went to bed last night with that funny feeling at the back of my throat. You know the one--it's a raw, tired feeling and when you notice it coming on you groan inwardly because you know that next comes the achiness, the cough, the fever, the headache... Darn those viruses, don't they know how busy I am?

The fortunate thing is, I can head downstairs and open up my kitchen cabinet and select from a variety of remedies to ease my symptoms. Headache? Good ole' Advil here I come. Nighttime cough? Thanks, Nyquil! Bye Bye fever, here comes the Tylenol!

Even if my son is ill, I have options. I can offer him a yummy concoction of children's grape flavored advil followed by a spoonful of honey to soothe his cough. I can tuck him into a warm bed. If I become concerned, I'm 10 minutes from an exceptional pediatric hospital where he will have access to any variety of antibiotics, steroids, breathing treatments, etc...

Not so for my sweet Compassion kids and their families. In many cases, they lack access to even the simplest of health remedies--access to clean drinking water! In fact, 425 million children across the globe do not have access to safe drinking water.

Children in developing countries are dying daily from preventable diseases like malaria, hepatitis B, measles, tuberculosis, and even simple dehydration from diarrhea. Additionally, acute respiratory infections---much like the illness I'm currently battling--annually kill an estimated 2 million children under age 5 in developing countries.

Statistics like those humble me. I am so terribly blessed to have access to adequate healthcare, clean water, vaccinations. I do not feel guilty about my opportunities, but I do feel a sense of accountability related to those opportunities. Jesus said in Luke 12:48 "But the one who does not know and does things deserving punishment will be beaten with few blows. From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked." Jesus has provided for me, and I believe that the expectation is that I will wisely use those resources and will help others who can not help themselves. 

I am grateful to programs like Compassion International who provide health care to the children enrolled in their programs. Each child who receives a vaccine against a preventable disease is one fewer mortality statistic. Please, consider sponsoring a child.

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