A bit more today from Strom’s Harvest of Hope.

 

There is a chapter about supporting refugees.  It gave me a whole new look at that life.  These women have been in the refugee camp for 3-23 years.  War has chased them from their homes and killed their families.  They are alone in a new place with no one and nothing.  However, in the case of Sudan, the southern refugees rushing to the north have the commonality of Christ.  Many of the southern people are believers and are bringing their faith with them. 

P111—

“‘We are discourage, yes.  But we know there’s a reason for us to be here,’ Alima said.  ‘We’re missionaries – not by choice, but by God’s appointment. (p112)  If it weren’t for us, people in the north would never hear about the true God of grace and love.  No outsiders can do what we can do here.’

“What Sudanese believers see is God scattering the Christians of their country the way he scattered the early church.  Although it’s painful and they suffer terribly, they look on this scattering as an effective method of spreading the message throughout the land. When Christians were forced to run, they simply took their faith along with them.”

God uses us where we are located.  How open am I to what he wants for me.  How open are you?  Do you find yourself in a place where you do not desire to be, longing for another home?  Ecclesiastes shows us that there are seasons in our lives, but that God can be and should be glorified in each season.  He doesn’t leave us.  He doesn’t lose us.  He knows exactly where we are at every moment and calls us to cling to him in prayer and deed.

Why?  What is the purpose?  Well, I grew up in the Presbyterian Church (USA) and the Westminster Shorter Catechism was what many people before me learned.  I only learned the first Q/A.  What is the chief end of man?  To glorify God and enjoy him forever.  To enjoy doesn’t mean that we are always happy, but that we have the joy of Christ in our hearts even when we are sad.  To enjoy Christ is to have hope for tomorrow, to pray for that joy to continue and that hope to be realized. 

These refugee women are not always happy, but they have the joy of the Lord in their life:

P118-

What Christian refugees will leave behind is a legacy of Christ’s love in action.

“Every day we meet to pray for Sudan,” said Lydia.

As we prepared to leave Sudan, women and children and families gathered around to bid us goodbye.  “Don’t forget us!” Faith May called out.  “Please, don’t forget us!  You in America, you bring us hope for the future.”

Prayer.  I’ve mentioned it often.  How I covet your prayers; I have a prayer page on this blog.  I’ve talked of how I am praying for you and mentioned how I have prayed with others in other languages but together to the Lord.  There is great power in prayer, do not ever doubt it.  The end of Strom’s chapter is a reminder of that power.

As Strom is leaving this body of believer within the refugee camp, the pastor calls out to her, just after the above quote from Faith May.

“Yes,” Pastor John called.  “When you pray there, God works here.”

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