Another dark grey day of rain today. I cheered myself; we really need the rain to fill the reservoirs. I had work to do, the day was fine. Then the room began to fill with light. Quickly I stepped out on the balcony. The sun was shining somewhere, half the village was flooded with light, the wet roads were silver ribbons, the brass clock on the church steeple blinding. It was wonderful! My soul retanked in that quarter hour and when the rain came pelting back, it was okay.
There’s a ton of issues out there that could make one feel pretty hopeless. What power do any of us have to change anything? That sliver of light drove it home to me – it just takes a little light to make a difference, to make the world a brighter place. I called Irene in Zambia this morning. Things are difficult there, the economy is really struggling with low commodity prices (Zambia’s economy depends on the copper export). Groceries and other daily essentials are getting more expensive, jobs are rare. Irene is the key mentor of a village savings program for sex workers. Despite the poor economy the women are making progress, especially she. She told me what an encouragement I am to them, without my support (more moral support than anything else) they wouldn’t have managed. Truth is, without her they wouldn’t be there. She’s the one who put in all the ground work, who these women trust and keep coming back to. She’s a big sliver of light down there. If I can be a little sliver of light for her – wonderful. Just as Naomie, my Zambian physiotherapist, was a sliver of light to me last night when I felt like giving up – I could hear her voice in my ear: “Even I feel like giving up sometimes. But what’s the use of giving up? There is no use. So I go on.”
It doesn’t take more than a sliver of light sometimes to give this world the hope it needs to keep going.