Believing in a Person Provides Reassurance

It Can Also Bring Life-Changing Results

by Dale Fisher

During my last four trips to Cameroon (2006–2009), I've gotten to know Clovis, one of 64 orphans at Harvest Children’s Home, the orphanage where we stay in Fundong, Cameroon. Clovis has been of particular interest to me.
A bright young man (now 16 years old), Clovis is an albino. As a nurse,I first noticed that although he lived 6 degrees north of the equator, at an elevation of 5,045 feet, Clovis wore no hat or long sleeves. In years past, I routinely attempted to remind him to cover himself up to prevent skin cancer. But something was different this year — something far more important than covering his skin.
At 16, Clovis is one of the older boys in the orphanage. He's quickly becoming a man. I learned that he does well in school.
He told me that he'd like to have a job as an electrician, advising me that he's halfway through a four-year-long class he's taking to become one. He showed me his workbook when I asked about his studies. As it turns out, he's been taking the course without textbooks, as well as essential tools, such as a tape measure, soldering iron, multi-meter, set of screwdrivers, hammer, and a couple of pairs of pliers. Consequently, without these requisite items, Clovis can’t actively participate in the electrical laboratory. If he doesn't perform his lab work, he can't pass the course and won't be able to become an electrician.
Enter David, a grandfatherly figure in his 70s, one of our mission team's members who was on his second mission to Cameroon. He's always sensitive to peoples' personal needs.
As soon as I presented Clovis’ need for electrician's tools to David, he opened his wallet and gave me the $20 needed to buy all of Clovis' tools. The following Saturday, we drove to the big city on a shopping trip. David bought all the necessary tools that were locally available, and even backordered a set of pliers that wasn't in stock.
That night, we gave the tool collection to Clovis. As well as being surprised, he was elated! The following week, we found a long piece of wire, came up with a battery, and bought a light bulb for Clovis’ first electrical lab project. Later that week, David spent part of an evening with Clovis, one on one, putting together a few components and getting the bulb to light.
I'm under the impression that Clovis had probably given up on ever becoming an electrician. He was probably resigned to the inevitability of getting an incomplete education — that is, until David came along! David bought the tools, spent quality time with Clovis, and helped the young man learn essential electrical skills. It was easy for Clovis to see that Dave believed in him and could easily see his future potential.
I believe that everyone needs someone in their life who will say, reassuringly and in tangible ways, “I believe in you!”

Dave hands Clovis a Gideon New Testsment

David invested both time and energy into Clovis during our trip in ways that showed Clovis that David believed in him. While working with Clovis, David discovered that he needed a New Testament and gave him one.

To all who received him Jesus Christ, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God (John 1:12).

June's family photo pages:

† Dale: Accomplishments of "Mission Cameroon 2009"

† Dale: One-on-One Care Support Changes a Child's Life

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