Her Faith Encourages Others

WHEN Silvia was born in December 1992, she seemed to be a completely healthy little girl. But at the age of two, Silvia was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis, an incurable disease that causes increasingly severe respiratory and digestive problems. To cope with her illness, Silvia takes 36 pills every day, uses inhalers, and receives physical therapy. Since her pulmonary capacity is only 25 percent of normal, she must remain attached to an oxygen tank, even when she goes out.

“It is amazing, though, how Silvia copes with this illness,” says Teresa, her mother. “Thanks to her knowledge of the Scriptures, she has strong faith. This faith helps her to deal with her grief and discomfort. She always remembers Jehovah’s promise of a new world, where all sick ones will be healed.” (Revelation 21:4) At times when her family feels down, Silvia’s confident smile buoys them up. She tells her parents and her brother: “Life in the new world will make up for all our present suffering.”

Silvia regularly shares the good news of God’s Word with others, and the people she talks to notice that her face radiates happiness and joy. The members of the Christian congregation where she attends meetings in the Canary Islands also greatly appreciate listening to her comments and seeing her participate. And after each meeting, Silvia likes to stay behind to talk with her Christian brothers and sisters. Her outgoing and cheerful personality has moved everyone in the congregation to love her.

“Silvia teaches us a very important lesson,” observes her father, Antonio. “Even when we have problems, life is a gift from God, and we should appreciate it.” Like Silvia, all of God’s servants​—young and old—​eagerly await the time when “no resident will say: ‘I am sick.’”​—Isaiah 33:24.

[Picture on page 31]

Silvia shares a Bible verse while her mother holds the oxygen tank