Submitted by Lyn on Wed, 10/08/2016 – 21:34
Bible Book: Mark
Verse: 46 – 52
What do you want me to do for you?
Have you heard this question in the last few weeks: “What do you want me to do?”
Somebody who asked you what kind of help you need and what it is in your life that you´re looking for.
This is the question Jesus asked a blind man, sitting at the doors of a village, stretching his hand out to get charity. And waiting. For hours and days, months, years and decades – waiting. Because – of course – of his blindness.
And he, Jesus, He doesn´t understand.
What is so difficult to understand? A blind man – what else could he want.
But I imagine that he wasn´t asked this in the previous hours, days, months and years.
He held out his hands – and the people gave him something; coins, a piece of bread, and those kids in the street threw small stones instead of money; but this did not bother him.
What do you want me to do for you?
I would like to tell you about Tracy.
Tracy is a woman, born in Kenya, who has been living in Germany with her two kids for around 15 years.
She is funny, optimistic, she brings people together.
She laughs a lot, and she weeps a lot.
I think she feels more than most other people I have met in my life.
Since she is a person with a lot of friends, who cares for others, she is of course still in contact with her family in a village 150 km from Nairobi.
And, by the way, she is HIV-positive.
She has been instructed about treatment. In Germany, someone living with HIV can get the antiretroviral treatment that they need.
Nobody asks you: What do you want me to do for you?
You get it and that´s it.
She took medication for years under the doctors´ advice.
Last year she got a phone call from Kenya: Her younger brother was calling.
Asking: “Tracy, what´s up? How are the children?” And he told her about some business things he was planning.
But Tracy felt: “This tune isn´t my brother’s. Something is wrong.” She let him carry on talking.
After a while: silence.
She heard him breathing, and gave him more time.
She heard sobbing.
What do you think, what did she do?
Never in the 15 years living in Germany did Tracy feel that she was in the wrong place as she felt in this minute. She wanted to be with him, around him, comfort him, her little brother.
After a short silence the call was broken off.
Knowing that it would take weeks or months to get the treatment to his place, Tracy decided to send him half of her HIV-treatment.
Every second month she brought it to the post office.
Of course Tracy knew that half of her treatment wouldn´t be enough, neither for her nor for him. But nevertheless she did it.
And of course the doctors wondered why her CD4 count was going down.
And of course, they couldn´t explain it.
And of course, they didn´t ask Tracy – “What do you want me to do for you?”
If they had asked, perhaps she would have told them: About her brother, about her family and the love between all of them.
And about her feelings: she couldn´t live with treatment, knowing her brother couldn´t get the same.
What can I learn from this?
It gives me a hint of what it means to live in the family of mankind.
What do you want me to do?
Let us try to begin with this: To ask each other, as neighbours and partners, as doctors and politicians. What do you want me to do for you?
Sermon at the lunch-time-prayer – Thursday 21st of July
21st International AIDS Conference – Durban
Rev. Axel Kawalla, Germany (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Author: Kawalla A (Rev)