Regardless of how you feel about Che Guevarra and the Cuban revolution, I would suggest that you see the film The Motorcycle Diaries. If you have a negative viewpoint of Che, I would suggest that you try to pretend that the movie is about a different person all together. That way you can appreciate the passion of the main character and his love for the poor. Watch the trailer:
In The Motorcycle Diaries a young Che (who is a doctor) travels across South America on motorcycle with a friend. At one point they visit a leper colony. When they arrive to the colony there is a scene in which the attendants of the colony instruct them to never touch the hands of the lepers without wearing gloves. To this Che asks, “Are they contagious?” and the attendant says, “No”. Though the leprosy was not contagious, the attendants were separating themselves from the lepers because of uneasiness about their condition.
Later in the film Che ignores the instructions of the attendants and reaches out his bare hand to shake the disgusting, disfigured, diseased hand of a leper. That willingness to remove the barrier between himself and the people made an incredible connection.
I had a much less dramatic version of this happen to me a few weeks ago.
On an evening that I was quite sick I went up to the church to shoot a video interview that I had scheduled. When I arrived, I explained to the woman that I was interviewing that I was sick and that she should stay away from me. She obliged.
After the interview we were talking a bit. We talked about our family’s plans to move to Boston. She shared in our joy about the move. We talked about my sickness.
Then, out of nowhere, she approached me and said, “I want to pray for you.” She reached out her hands and laid them on me and immediately started praying for my illness. She knew that I was sick and that by touching me she would put herself at risk for catching the sickness. She didn’t care.
To her, it was far more important to show me love by praying for me than to worry about whether or not she was going to experience a discomfort by potentially getting sick.
This is what love looks like.
It was at this point that I understood that when the Bible talks about “the laying on of hands” it means a lot more than just praying that the sick will be healed or that the burdened will be freed. It is a humbling before God that says “though I may get sick, I love this person enough and trust God enough to risk it.”