Encounters between Jesus and the sick, or lepers, or the blind are dramatic examples of God’s compassion. These stories only partially explain the full impact of Jesus’ healing voice and touch. Those without physical sight who received inner, spiritual sight were indeed transformed – and the same is happening today.
A school in north India has been bringing spiritual sight to blind children for over a century. Today more than 100 visually impaired children are being cared for, educated and equipped for adult life. The Sharp Memorial School is a wonderful example of work started by overseas missionaries, mostly women, continuing in India’s modern world.
In the modern context, improved medical care restores some sight to many children, and they learn modern skills including computer use. In school they sit alongside sighted children so that integration increases mutual understanding and overcomes the stigma of sightlessness. Young adults from modest family backgrounds are going on to further education and into employment, overcoming prejudice along the way.
Each week, school assemblies and prayers are making the children aware of the good news of Jesus Christ. As well as reading their Bibles in braille, the tradition of memorising Bible verses continues. Just as their physical faculties are more developed to compensate for lack of sight, so the children have different, and often deeper, insights and spiritual vision. Many have been poorly treated by their families, so knowing the love of a Heavenly Father gives them a strong assurance for their future livelihood.
At The Sharp Memorial School, children are encountering Jesus Christ through their teachers, those who care for them and the Bible. Over the years, these encounters lead to transformation, just as it did to blind people who actually met Jesus. What the Bible tells us of God giving sight to the blind is being mirrored in the lives of girls and boys at this school. God has been faithful to the endeavours of those working at the school, and the work continues to bear fruit in lives being transformed by the saving grace of our Lord Jesus.
Our prayers for the spread of the good news of Jesus go beyond our communities in the UK. For the sake of the gospel, members of South Asia Forum are encouraged to have contacts with God’s fellow workers in the countries of South Asia.
People in the UK can support the school through The Bartimaeus Charitable Trust. Please contact the treasurer, Richard Todd on 07887 625893.