“She Carried Little Elvis on Her Back!”



We had a big surprise arriving home from college last week. Mop and pail in the middle of the hall, cleaning supplies strewn all around – it looked like Victoria had left in a hurry! She comes by in the mornings to keep the dust down.

We tried a few numbers. No answer. So we just left the mops where they were and assumed she’d be back.

Sure enough, Victoria came through the gate a bit later – loaded down with Elvis, her little grandson! She had walked to Kitwe Central Hospital, as much a mortuary as a hospital, checked the child out, scolded what staff she could find, and walked the kilometer back to our place with the boy on her back!

“They were not helping!,” she said, very upset. “The boy, he just get worse! Those people, they just want money! I took the boy with me!” She looked at us as though we could fix this.

We called a former student who is a medical aid. He came over by nightfall. “This is very serious,” said Shaka, looking at the swollen little arm. “This is bone infection, probably caused by an unclean needle. Has he had an injection?”

Indeed, Elvis had been injected with Quinine a week earlier for severe malaria. Kitwe Central Hospital! The procedure had infected the upper arm, which was now swollen up to twice its size.

Shaka helped us admit the boy to the Chinese Mine Hospital where he works. They slated the lad for surgery first thing in the week — even though it was Chinese New Year!  Next day he came out of surgery with a reasonable report.

“We just did that operation in time,” said Shaka. “The infection had attacked the bone and it was quite critical. Within a week…?” He shook his head at what might have been.

Sometimes you help save a life just by being on the ground. We hope and pray for that these days. It’s the story of Africa missions.  Your presence is probably your greatest gift.

Once in awhile you just lend a hand to those who carry the sick on their back.

Published by jckatlarge

John Charles Kerr has a couple of books in print. One is a devotional. published by Thomas Nelson: "IN THE CLEFT OF THE ROCK." The other, published by Essence, "HIDDEN RICHES AMONG THE POOR: REFLECTIONS ON THE VIBRANT FAITH OF AFRICA." These books can be found on Amazon. Partnering with Ruth who teaches English and Music, colleague of Dr. Adrian Chalwe & Dr. Victor Chanda, graduating 30+ community leaders-per-year, in vibrant fellowship with the Zambian Pentecostal Assemblies of God, father of Bob and Jeff, grandfather of April, Nathan, Lucy, Emma, Charlie, Betty & Dottie!

One thought on ““She Carried Little Elvis on Her Back!”

  1. Isn’t this just what the Bible means when it says we were created for good works? (Eph 2:10) I am always humbled and amazed that God chose to use us to accomplish His will on earth. And what an encouragement to all of us that God doesn’t only call those who have all the answers for every situation, nor is it in the strength of our own abilities that merits our anointing, but rather our obedience is the conduit for us to bring Him the most glory.

    What a wonderful picture of Christ in this grandmother carrying her grandson on her back, bearing his burden step by step out of love and concern to bring him to a place where he would have hope and healing.

    Over 5000 years ago, a man named Jesus, bruised and beaten, carried a wooden cross up the hill to Calvary and upon His back was the burden of all humanity, sick with sin and there He laid down his life so we could find healing and hope.

    I am constantly amazed as I have considered the plethora of worldviews like pantheism, panentheism, pluralism and so on, that none of them include redemption. Some speak of forgiveness and yet all are dependant on man doing enough “good deeds” to outweigh the “bad”and none offer the certainty of knowing you will go to heaven. It’s just a crapshoot at best.

    In contrast our loving Heavenly Father, not only gives us a way to be reconciled with him, the free gift of salvation bringing the certainty of heaven, but He is intimately aware of what we will have need of.

    As Elvis was carried on his Grandmother’s back, she could not see the solution, but God saw. Just as Abraham and Isaac went up the mountain, his answer to his son was, “God sees.” And not only does God see but He isn’t caught off guard,He is fully aware of how He is going to meet that need.

    So, I thank you for sharing this as it has encouraged me greatly and I am sure it will do the same for many others.

    Blessings to you.

    Exodus 2:10 – “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: