Take This Child
Justus Miwanda was a four-month-old baby when his mother left him at his grandparents’ home. The message was unspoken but clear: “Take this child.”
Years later, the aging grandparents, unable to continue caring for him, left Justus in his father’s care.
“Take this child,” were their words as they left, and Justus watched and wondered.
Justus was reunited with his mother when he was a teenager. He found it hard to forgive her—she had abandoned him as if he didn’t matter. But the longing for a relationship with his mother was strong, and love grew.
As a man, Justus became a teacher and impacted many young people. But misfortune visited him once again when his fiancé unexpectedly died of AIDS. Burdened by grief, Justus claimed the healing power of Jesus’ love and began reaching out to the most helpless around him. He adopted an orphaned boy, then two, then three, then four, and then five.
In his late 20s, Justus met and married Deborah, the love of his life. She readily embraced his boys as her own and became an instant mother to five teenagers, all bigger than her! The words “Take this child” were lived out daily in Justus and Deborah’s home.
Today, Justus and Deborah have three biological children. Their five adopted sons are grown and have all become teachers like their adopted father.
As Executive Director of International Needs Uganda, Justus oversees a medical clinic serving a population of more than 100,000 and two IN Uganda primary schools with more than 700 students, 40% of whom are AIDS orphans. Justus is also an ordained Anglican minister in the Kampala diocese, working in a slum church among the poorest of his people.
Justus sees many desperate children walk through his office door. Even when the schools are full and
there doesn’t seem to be a way to accommodate one more child, Justus hears the same message that has reverberated throughout his life: Take this child. So he looks each new arrival in the eye and trusts in his heavenly Father to provide once again.
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