Sunday, September 15, 2013

Exactly what WAS the sin of Sodom?

Ezekiel 16:49

49 Behold, this was the guilt of your sister Sodom: she and her daughters had pride, excess of food, and prosperous ease, but did not aid the poor and needy.

 These pictures take on a whole new meaning, when this is the home of friends, ladies that I see on a daily basis, as they struggle - to provide... to love their children well... to know GOD at a deeper level.  I am so thankful that we can walk by their sides!

Yes, this verse from Ezekiel has haunted me since I read it about a month ago.   As I examine myself, will you join me?  

How can we "help" this community?

No, we don't need a team to come and pick up all the trash... the trash, to me, speaks of hopelessness.  Families that can't see their way out and have just given up hope.

Our friends need to walk with people who can show them the GOD of all HOPE.  The God who sees them in their need, loves them, and wants a relationship with them!

Cleaning up the trash is easy... 
DISCIPLESHIP takes time... 
and walking with hurting people HURTS!

"Our perspective should be less about how we are going to fix the materially poor and more about how we can WALK TOGETHER, asking God to fix us both."
Brad Matlack 

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Giving UP...

Shiku's "house"... a two-stall bathroom... literally.  Right in the middle of this tall grass!

Shiku - we met her at the medical clinic in June.  She had brought her 7 year old son - but then, between seeing the doctor and waiting for the meds, she left.  Too long to wait before having a drink!  A neighbor picked up the medicine for Shiku's son.

Then, 2 weeks ago, she looked for us again.  Desperate.  Her father had broken his hip and was lying in pain.  She had come to the end of herself!  Sobs.  Shaking.  

Although she was completely drunk, she accompanied us to the hospital.  She tried us.  Pushing.  Demanding.  

The next morning, at 7:30 when we arrived to carry her father back to the hospital, she wasn't around.  Ah, her father told us.  "She is with that man that pays her 25 shillings (29 cents, US) for the night."

Drunk again.

We prayed.  Cried.  Prayed some more.  How could we help this family?  

I'm ashamed to admit now - after Baba Shiku started walking, drinking, against the doctor's orders, we decided that we would only focus on the 7 year old boy - try to find a safe place for him. 
The other two were too stuck in their ways.  Hopeless...
Baba Shiku's stall of their two-stall home.

I'm so thankful that GOD doesn't see things the way we do.   

Today, Shiku attended our Girls With Vision meeting.  Yes, she was still drunk... But she was there! For the second meeting in a row!

Then, she got out of her seat and moved next to Pauline.   
Took the BIBLE from her hands.  
Read to us all.

My mind can't even wrap around this!
Now, I recognize - once again...  NO ONE is past hope!  
Shiku is longing for hope!   

I love where I get to be - sitting in a room with Shiku - praying with her and for her - expecting GOD to change her life!  Even being surprised when GOD works - in a situation that I saw as hopeless!

Psalm 62:5-6 
God, the one and only— I’ll wait as long as he says. Everything I hope for comes from him, so why not? He’s solid rock under my feet, breathing room for my soul, An impregnable castle: I’m set for life.

I Thessalonians 5:9-11 
God didn’t set us up for an angry rejection but for salvation by our Master, Jesus Christ. He died for us, a death that triggered life... So speak encouraging words to one another. Build up hope so you’ll all be together in this, no one left out, no one left behind...