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Friday, July 15, 2016

"Sight for the Blind" by Alison Sales

11 people, 12 days, 100 talking bibles, 5 water wells, and the power of the Gospel resulted in hundreds of Malawian’s accepting Christ this June. Africa is never going to be the same and neither am I. I have been working on my Masters in English Literature for the last year and I’m not sure you could possibly find someone who loves reading more than me. I devour books, or as my little sis likes saying I eat books for breakfast. In order to read, and study, and just see in general, I have always worn glasses. So I was especially excited about fitting the people of Malawi with reading glasses. I loved learning how to get them the correct prescription and try on different frames. However, nothing prepared me for their looks of joy when they were finally able to read clearly! Of course we had translators, so the man speaking Chichewa would tell me word for word as men and woman laughed and cried and shared their stories of watching the blurred words become clear and distinct and readable. I didn’t need a translator to understand their excitement and joy.

While we were in Malawi we showed the Jesus Film several times on a large projector in the middle or remote villages. Each night I would sit down with hundreds of people who were mesmerized by
watching Jesus heal the sick and then die on the cross for them. Over and over again I was specifically touched by the scene where Jesus gives sight to the blind man. The Malawian’s in the audience would always exclaim loudly and even clap when the scales fell from the man’s eyes.

Fitting people with reading glasses reminded me of how none of Jesus’ miracles have ended. When he walked on the earth he gave sight to the blind and now his Holy Spirit still guides Christians to give physical and spiritual sight to the blind.

This was the first Reaching the Hungry trip in Africa that has done an eyeglasses clinic. In my opinion it could not have been more successful. I met dozens of villages’ leaders, hardworking mothers and even chiefs who told me they needed the glasses because they could no longer read the Bible without them. I love Jesus deeply and I love reading so so so much. Yet I was shocked to discover how blind my eyes have been—fitting men and woman with eyeglasses showed me my own blindness. Their clear expressions of pure joy and unfiltered excitement, their claps when Jesus heals the people in the film, and their loud calls of “Alleluia” have given me new sight.

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Thank you for your words of encouragement. The Sales Family