Pastor Dubaku

  • Jan. 29, 2016
  • #8805

A Pastor in Tanzania receives a special gift that allows him to continue in his ministry: glasses.

Pastor Dubaku

Hi, I’m Joni Eareckson Tada with an eye-opening story.

You know, the World Health Organization says that approximately 200 million people worldwide need glasses, yet they do not have access to them. What for us, is a quick stop at the pharmacy for a pair of reading glasses or a simple annual visit to the optometrist, is a luxury beyond reach for people in developing nations. They say that the cost of reading glasses can be up to six months in salary for a poor person in the developing world. Not only are eyeglasses an extravagance, it’s almost impossible to get them. Like in Africa there’s only one ophthalmologist per million people.

Now, my friend and coworker, Lisa, is truly burdened by all this. It’s why she’s very involved in her church’s medical mission’s outreach. Recently, Lisa told me about her mission trip to Africa to provide eyeglasses to the poor. There, she met a pastor in Tanzania who, for many years, had faithfully preached the Gospel in his community. Pastor Dubaku loved teaching from the Word of God, that is, until his vision began to fail. At first, it was just a matter of him squinting to see the words in his Bible, and from there, he went to reading and preaching under brighter light. But over time, pastor Dubaku faced the inevitable: he could no longer read God’s Word. When he did preach, he could only rely on portions of scripture that he knew by heart. Well, that’s when Lisa and her medical vision team from church arrived in his village. And that’s when Lisa heard his story. Pastor Dubaku told her that the hardest part of losing his vision was that he didn’t want to just share a summary of the Gospel or preach only from his favorite verses. No, he wanted to be able to read the Bible and deliver the Word of God in all its accuracy. And so, with great sadness, this dear pastor told Lisa how he had relinquished his ministry of preaching -- all because he could not read the words on the page.

Oh my goodness, how one servant of the Lord would have to give up his calling, all because he did not have access to a pair of reading glasses? Thankfully, though, all that changed the next morning when Lisa and her team of eye experts set up their mobile eye clinic in this pastor’s village. Not only did they examine his eyes, but they also provided him with a custom pair of prescription eyeglasses. Pastor Dubaku slowly put on his new glasses, he slowly opened up to the middle of his Bible and began reading. He was so happy, tears started welling. He could actually see the written words on the page! What’s more, he know that now he could now resume his calling. He told Lisa with great joy that now he would be able to preach God’s Word again to the downcast and brokenhearted, to the widow and the orphan, to the disabled and the young. 

Friend, this is the way the rest of the world lives. These are the type of people we serve at Joni and Friends, reminding them of Matthew chapter 19, “With God all things are possible.” Perhaps you haven’t given much thought to your health — you walk with ease, your mind is sharp and you can see just fine. Well, friend, no one is immune to disability. And when it comes to eye health, it’s important that we do make that annual trip to the eye doctor. And to help you, we have put together a downloadable resource on eye health. Just go to my radio page today at joniandfriends.org to download your free gift. Remember, that’s joniandfriends.org and please pray for the ministry of Pastor Dubaku.

Photo: cbcomaha.org

© Joni and Friends

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