Tomorrow, September 29th, we begin our journey home. Please pray us safely home. We are all tired and I will confess that personally, I need strength. This has been an unbelievably fruitful trip but it was not without a cost. Nothing good ever comes without a cost. I look forward to the day in heaven when all of us are joined by thousands of Liberian children who have trusted in Jesus. With the conditions in this place, some will arrive in heaven before us. It is very difficult for these children.
Sam and Silvana will arrive in Ireland some time before us. David and I will reach America Thursday evening, September 30th.
Please continue to hold the children of Liberia in your prayers.
THE LORD’S PRAYER ORPHANAGE
Many years ago, my husband and I fed a Liberian student named David Leah. While attending Covenant College, he was often in our home. At his request, we went to The Lord’s Prayer Orphanage.
The children and young people were very responsive. I looked into their eyes and saw the Father touch their deep hurts. Some are there because their parents abandoned them. Some have parents but because of their desperate poverty, they cannot care for their children. Some have parents who died in the war.
All of these children and young people have much to forgive. If they do not forgive, they will never be whole. Pray for them as they learn to walk in their new faith.
THE RICH MAN’S HOUSE
Far from Monrovia, we arrived at a giant gate connected to a bigger wall. When the gate opened, it was like looking into another world. We saw an enormous mansion surrounded by a green lawn and big trees.
One it had been the home of an important government official, but then the war came. Though the marble floors remained, everything else had been ripped out of the place. The walls had patches where bullet holes had marked the walls. Everything needed paint. Now the empty rooms were full of children as the house was being used for a school.
Yesterday, the rooms echoed with the laughter of children. After the story, the place filled with the sound of their prayers. I was telling the story of Joseph and how his brothers sold him as a slave. I could look out the window and see a large statue that was built by slaves returning to Africa after they were freed. Liberia was settled by freed slaves from America. Then, I heard the children asking Jesus to free them. Awesome!
The houses surrounding the rich man’s house were some of the worst I’ve seen. I wondered how some of them were standing.
This was a day full of desperate poverty. We spent an hour trying to cross through the big market in Monrovia. Trash was everywhere. Piles of rotting garbage filled the market. Much of what was being sold was used and not in good shape. There was a sea of people, produce, tables, umbrellas, mud and garbage. The rat population had to be huge.
Liberia is broken. These people are dear and kind. They have so many needs. Hold them always in your prayers. Perhaps, some of you read these letters who are called to serve overseas. Please ask God if you are to play a part in His dream for the children and adults in Liberia.
This town is far out from Monrovia and you would really need to know where you are going or you would not find it. It is really more of a village. As you enter the town there is a large sign naming the town and proclaiming that this town is “defecation free zone”. The sign commands, “No spreading pupu around”. As I have often written, it is different here.
However, in all of the ways that count, we are the same. Our children have the same needs. So many children and people from the community gathered in a church to watch the puppet show. We told them about Jesus and they responded loudly to the invitation.
Perhaps, there is one big difference between our children in the west and these children. All of their comforts have been stripped away. Their tender hearts eagerly respond to Jesus and His call. May we all be so blessed!
A CERTAIN RISK
I have been reading a very good book while I have been in Liberia. It is A CERTAIN RISK by Paul Richardson. There is a quote in it that speaks of the call I hear in my own heart. I believe it is a very well worded description of the challenge we all face.
“God created you to rest in the whisper of His voice and to be refuelled by His passions. He calls you to thrive on the far side of your fears, to awaken into His dreams, and to be infused with His creativity. He beckons you to be immersed in His spirit and to rise up and worship Him through your responses to the dry, hurting, and fallen conditions in your world.”
How will you answer? How will you serve?
Linda for Sam, Silvana and David and our Liberian Friends