In a small village in China, an unconventional duo planted 10,000 trees over a 10 year span. One of the men Jia Wenqi, 60 – had no arms; the other Jia Haixia, 61 – was blind. Wenqi lost both arms after touching an uncovered power line when he was 3. Haixia was born with no sight in one eye and lost vision in the other after a quarry explosion in 2000. “When the doctor told me I wouldn’t be able to see again, I wanted to kill myself,” Haixia once said. But, then, Wenqi offered his sleeve and said, “you’ll be my arms; I’ll be your eyes.”
In 2002, they noticed that the birds in their village had disappeared. “In the past, the mountains had grass and trees,” Haixia said in an interview. “But ever since the quarries came in, it’s been a wasteland.” So they decided to plant trees. Only two of the 800 trees they planted survived the winter in their first year. But over time, they perfected their technique. Unable to afford seeds, Haixia would climb trees to cut off branches, then replant the sprigs; when planted near water, they grew into full trees. Soon, a small forest was growing around the duo’s village, and local officials set aside 100 acres for the duo to reforest. They have since been credited with planting 10,000 trees, a small forest. “So let the generation after us, and everyone else, see what two handicap individuals have accomplished,” Wenqi said. “Though we are limited physically, our spirit is limitless.”
In Ephesians 4:16 we read:
“He makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love.”
The enemy understands that as followers of Jesus we have strength in unity in the Holy Spirit. For generations, the enemy has continued to splinter the people of Ireland by identity, political agendas, and nationality; even within the Church, we have splintered denominationally. Yet in 1 Corinthians 1:10, we are called to “live in harmony with each other. Let there be no divisions in the Church. Rather be of one mind, united in thought and purpose.”
Satan is in no way intimidated by a Church fighting each other. What threatens him is a force built on one foundation and brought closer together by the love of God. Our central focus should be Jesus and only Jesus. When we come together, united in His love and through the power of the Holy Spirit working within each of us, we can achieve the extraordinary in His name. Lives were rescued, communities revived, and Ireland transformed. Let’s continue praying, believing that all followers of Jesus throughout Ireland will unite together in genuine love for each other and work together to be His light throughout this land.
Father, we come to You as people of a splintered nation. Father, I pray that as followers of Jesus throughout Ireland, we would set down our personal and religious agendas and instead fully submit and seek after You. Father, soften our hearts, help us to love each other and intentionally seek unity among Your Church in Ireland. In Jesus’ name, I pray, Amen.