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Esther, 13

Grandmother and Nine Uncles

To Sabbath School teachers: This story is for Sabbath, July 9.

By Andrew McChesney


sther lives in the highest city in the world. She lives in El Alto, Bolivia. El Alto means “The Heights” in Spanish. Do you know how high her city is? The highest point is 13,615 feet (4,150 meters) above sea level. That is higher than Mount Fiji in Japan and Mount Hood in the U.S. state of Oregon. Because the city is so high, the weather is cold here nearly all the time. So, Esther almost always wears warm hoodies, sweaters, and coats.

She likes to sing and pray and go with her family to church on Sabbath. But many things changed when COVID-19 reached her city. The school was closed. The church was closed. She and her family could only worship with other people on Zoom.

Esther became very worried about Grandmother. Grandmother has a tumor growing on her face, and the tumor has caused her to go blind. There seemed to be nothing that Esther could do to help Grandmother. She could only pray. Every Wednesday, Esther’s church organized a prayer meeting on Zoom, and she prayed for Grandmother.

“Dear God, please keep Grandmother Cecília safe,” she prayed. “Help her to give her heart to You.”

As the weeks passed, Grandmother still had the tumor on her face, and her health was getting worse. Esther kept praying.

“Dear God, please keep Grandmother Cecília safe,” she prayed. “Help her to give her heart to You.”

One day, the pastor visited their home. He anointed Grandmother and prayed for her. He also invited nine of Esther’s uncles, who were not church members, to join a special week of prayer at the house. He said everyone would pray, sing, and study the Bible together. All nine uncles and Grandmother participated in the week of prayer. At the end of the week, the pastor asked if anyone wanted to get baptized. Grandmother immediately raised her hand. Esther was so happy. Jesus had answered her prayers!

Since that day, Esther has seen big changes in Grandmother and her nine uncles. They are no longer worried about COVID-19. They are at peace in Jesus.

At the Zoom prayer meetings, Esther now prays for all of her uncles to get baptized. She also is continuing to pray for Grandmother’s health. If Jesus does not heal Grandmother now, Esther knows that He will heal her when He comes in the clouds and takes His people up, up, up — higher than the highest city in the world, higher than the highest mountain in the world, all the way to heaven. Esther can’t wait!

Thank you for planning a generous Thirteenth Sabbath Offering on Sept. 24 that will open a new church in El Alto, where Esther lives. At the church, people will be able to learn about the Jesus who answers prayers and is coming soon to take His people home.