Brittni is not a bug lover. In fact she hates things that creep or crawl. Currently she is a student missionary in India at a boarding school for orphans. She believes God’s goodness and mercy is giving her the strength to deal with the unimaginable.
Brittni writes, “Since the first day I arrived I quickly realized that head lice play a big part in the life of children here in India. I have even put off writing about it because of my own personal disturbing feelings about lice.”
According to the RID website head lice are wingless insects about the size of a sesame seed that live on the human scalp and suck blood. They cannot jump or fly but crawl from one person to another when there is head-to-head contact or when personal items like brushes, combs, hats, etc. are shared. The female lays her eggs near or at the root of the hair. A waterproof, glue-like substance holds the eggs in place until hatched. When the lice emerge from their eggs a “nit” is left behind.
Brittni explains that everyone at the school has lice. It is impossible for her to love and cuddle with these beautiful children and not get them also. During her time at the school she has gotten used to the children picking through her hair to help eliminate her own infestation.
Sunday is the day she and the kids sit under the trees and go though each other’s hair. As she makes this major adjustment to the culture in this particular school Brittni believes her adaptation is God’s way of humbling her.
“The lice experience has been my ‘foot washing’ experience,” remarks Brittni . “It is one thing to wash clean feet at church for communion and another matter to experience picking lice out of dirty hair. My love for these children just simply washes away any discomfort. I wonder if this is how God felt as He came to this earth, washed dirty feet and even now must deal with our dirty, sinful lives. The love He feels for us far outweighs His personal discomfort.”
It is exciting to see how God takes our service and stretches us in new ways.
“The Lord will give strength to His people; the Lord will bless His people with peace.” (Psalms 29:11).