In malaria-affected countries, like Burkina Faso, bed nets can save lives. LWR’s malaria work educates families about the importance of bed net use and timely treatment of malaria symptoms.

There are many strange things around us in this world today. From the strangely absurd that many of us witness every night on reality TV, to the strangely beautiful creation that fills the depths of the ocean. Just think about how many times in a day you find yourself saying “Isn’t that strange?” or “That’s weird!”

While strange is easy to recognize, awe might be a bit more difficult. I know my use of the word “awesome” is just as commonplace today as it was when I, as a teenager, marveled at the discovery of a mint condition Ken Griffey Jr. rookie baseball card.

But what in our daily lives truly fills us with awe? The compassion of one child of God reaching out to another? The startling beauty of God’s creation at a moment we least expect it? What in your daily life has truly filled you with such awe that you have glorified God like these witnesses of Jesus in Luke?

Not long ago, I sat in awe alongside my Lutheran World Relief colleagues as I learned the hopeful news that where malaria once claimed the life of a child every 30 seconds, then every 45 seconds, it has now slowed to every 60 seconds. That 15-second increment may seem minuscule, but it means thousands of lives are saved each day.

Receiving this news places us on sacred ground — where things seem strangely possible in a world that fills us with so much doubt. Sharing this news with you fills me with awe of God’s grace, working through U.S. Lutherans to achieve a seemingly impossible goal. And we are! And our response to this wonder, to this miracle can only be to glorify God who has called us to this work and given us a spirit of healing to share with the world. Blessings to you as you join us in the work of bringing hope and healing to the world! May our work glorify the strange and aweinducing God who calls us out into the world to heal!


God of wonder and awe, fill our lives with your presence so we may go and share with the world. Thank you for those times when you place us on sacred ground and give us the gifts to tell the world of what we have seen. In the name of your Son, Christ Jesus. AMEN.

Chandler Carriker is LWR’s Congregational Resources Specialist