If our greatest need had been information, God would have sent an educator.
If our greatest need had been technology, God would have sent a scientist.
If our greatest need had been money, God would have sent an economist.
If our greatest need had been pleasure, God would have sent us an entertainer.
But our great need was forgiveness, so He sent us a Savior." Anonymous
At dinner one night, Kevin and I were reminiscing about God’s grace on our lives and his incredible trust in calling us into ministry. Much of our spiritual and ministerial growth was formulated with individuals that we had the opportunity to be in relationship with. In actuality, they ministered to us with their vulnerability, willingness to be human and their sincere desire to experience God’s love and forgiveness on a deeper level.
One of our teachers was a woman named Nita, a R.N. at a psychiatric hospital in which Kevin served as a Chaplain and I was one of his volunteers. Nita loved Chelsea and held her in her arms a week after she was born. As Kevin and I would do rounds and chapel services Nita would be walking the corridors singing to Chelsea and soon a bond developed between them. A few weeks before we moved to Ventura, Nita was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.
Within months this plump bright-eyed woman became a skeleton with very little flesh covering her bones. Chelsea and I made bi-monthly trips to visit with her; we would sing to her and read her scriptures. Nita especially loved the Matthew passage which reads “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. But go and learn what this means: I desire mercy, not sacrifice.”
One evening, we received the inevitable phone call saying that Nita was at death’s door. Kevin, Chelsea and I journeyed to her house and when we arrived Chelsea went running to Nita’s bedroom where she jumped on her bed and began singing to her and patting her head. “Nita, do you see Jesus? Nita, what does Jesus look like? Are his arms opened for you? Nita, it’s o.k. – Jesus is taking you home to live with him.” We adults stood around the bed with our eyes filled with tears and our minds amazed that this three year-old was assisting Nita with her journey home to her Savior.
It has been 25 years since that evening, I have experienced the blessed opportunity of journeying with others as they went home to their Savior. But, that particular evening a broken sick woman allowed a child to lead her home to her Savior. Today, I understand with more clarity why Christ came as a baby; his desire was to demonstrate how vulnerable He is willing to become to be our Savior.
Thank you for sharing your love and support to our staff and the vulnerable children, youth and families we served this past year. So that we may continue to share the gift of Christ throughout 2020, will you join me in giving a special Christmas gift to City Impact? May we hear from you by December 31st? Merry Christmas and may you and your family experience the love of Jesus Christ throughout the New Year.
Because of Him,
Betty Alvarez Ham
P.S. Support us when you shop at smile.amazon.com/ch/77-0388915 for your holiday gifts and more, and Amazon donates to City Impact.
City Impact’s 25th Anniversary is coming in 2020 watch for celebration updates!