FINDING GOD IN A TENT CITY

Posted: July 16, 2010 in Uncategorized

PATRICK:

Received this message from Patrick, the 14 year-old boy who we, last week, sent to the Shriner’s Hospital in Springfield, Massachusetts for surgery on his injured, infected leg.  He was injured when a out of control truck struck him during the earthquake.

Patrick writes in his own words and showing off what he learned at our hospital’s  English lessons: "hi how are you ?i miss you so much all the
time.can you say john i missed him so too.i ask god please ,blessing
your family ,every times . thank you so much,beth and john ,god bless
you?"
 

 

I have been in the reading mode lately and have gone through seven books in the past ten days.  I am able to do this by sleeping less and by snatching periods of time during the day to read.  I especially like the opening paragraph of Louie Giglio in his book: i am not but i know I AM.

He writes, "Life is the tale of two stories-one finite and frail, the other eternal and enduring. The tiny one-the story of us-is as brief as the blink of an eye.  Yet somehow our infatuation with our own little story- and our determination to make it as big as we possibly can-blinds us to the massive God Story that surrounds us on every side."

Andy Stanley writes in: IT CAME FROM WITHIN-The Shocking Truth of What Lurks in the Heart

"Guilt says, "I owe you." Anger is fueled by the notion that you owe me.  Greed is kept alive the assumption that I owe me. Jealousy says, "God owes me."

A TRUE STORY OF FINDING GOD IN A TENT CITY

Last Saturday I was eating lunch while at the Youth Day that our church, Port au Prince Fellowship put on.  While eating and watching the teens play soccer, a middle aged couple came up to me and said that they wanted to talk with me.  I had already known this as a couple of weeks earlier I was told their remarkable story by a fellow missionary.

This couple whom I will call Luj and Jackie have been coming to our church for about three months and this is what they told me.

" They are not married but they have been together for a number of years.  They used to be involved in doing and selling drugs until Luj had a traumatic experience that caused them to leave the city and also no longer do or sell drugs.  It seems that Luj had gotten on the wrong side of some rather violent big time drug traffickers and so one night they found him and put him in their car to be taken out of the city and shot dead.  But as they were in the vehicle with Luj on the way out of the city to kill him and while passing a police station one of the wheels of the vehicle in which they were traveling literally fell off.

The Haitian are spiritual/mystical people and something like this was obviously not just an issue of loose lug nuts.  No, clearly this was not to be and the spirits had decided that Luj would not die this night.  So the men told him that they would let him go but if they found him again, they would for sure kill him.

So Luj had a friend who said that he and Jackie could go to his place several hours out of Port au Prince, but if they did or sold drugs they would not be allowed to stay.  They agreed and spent a couple of years out of Port au Prince and out of sight. Coming back to Port au Prince, they found jobs and settled into a drug free life, yet one that had not yet been surrendered to Christ.

The earth shook for about 40 seconds on January 12th and in that shaking the house that Luj and Jackie lived in collapsed completely and now they found themselves homeless and and living in a large tent city with thousands of others that had lost homes, family, and friends.  Because they both had found jobs in the medical field,  and because they both speak English, they both found themselves still living in the tent city but working with the international community that had come into the tent city to help.  They also found themselves in contact with missionaries and Christians groups that came into the tent city to help.

One afternoon they heard a missionary talking about Christ with another in the tent city and they expressed their hunger for something spiritual that they could hold onto.  Since God had already prepared their hearts Luj and Jackie both accepted Christ into their lives and now very much desire to serve and please God.

And so that is why they have come to talk to me.  They want to please God by getting married and want me to perform the ceremony.  Listening to them talk I within started praising God for this couple that through adversity and tragedy found themselves living in a tent city,  but which is where the also found God and then really found one another.

Pray for Luj and Jackie as we plan their wedding.

John
 

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