Not to us, O Lord, not to us but to your name be the glory, because of your love and faithfulness. Psalm 115:1
The lines of people coming to Pastor R’s tent, asking for prayer, continue day by day. People who have so little, living only moment by moment, asking for prayer, seeking the comfort of a God they have only recently met. Hungry for food for their stomachs, but even more hungry for food to feed their spirits. Can they hope to be fed? Will God show up? Will they find hope to continue another day?
Pastor R called this Tuesday morning to tell us of a woman named Sarah. We relay that story to you now and pray that you will be overwhelmed, as are we, with the reality of God’s loving kindness towards us all, and that you join us in praising Him for His faithfulness!
Hundreds of people, upwards of 400-500 at a time, wait patiently for a time of prayer with Pastor R. Despite his protests, these Syrian refugees call him a prophet. He knows he is only a man, not a prophet, but he is filled with a God-given love and compassion for people who are lost without Yeshua. He relies entirely on the Lord of the Harvest for every word he speaks, every breath he takes. When we have the privilege of speaking with him, he repeatedly declares, “Praise God, praise God.” It is his anthem.
Sarah was not waiting in line for prayer. Sarah was far too angry and bitter to wait. In her hands she held a bag and she was furious. She ran toward Pastor R, screaming that he was a liar, a fraud. She was determined to attack him physically in her anger, but several missionaries held her back. In the bag were pieces of human remains and Sarah screamed that this was what was left of her children, killed in the bombing that continues in Syria. She demanded to know where was this God that Pastor R speaks of? How could God allow this to happen to her children? How dare he preach of a loving God?
Pastor R, who has a deep love for all but especially for children, was heartbroken at the sight of this mother holding her children’s remains. He silently told God that he could not carry this burden alone, that he had no way to speak life to Sarah in the face of this horror. He begged God to show his mercy and love to Sarah.
He beckoned Sarah to come to him as God instructed him to speak John 14:1 to her. As gently as he could, he told her, ‘Do not let your heart be troubled. Trust in God, trust also in Yeshua.’ Then he began to pray for her. It was then that she collapsed on the ground and lay still. Pastor R and the missionaries prayed for her as she lay there for about half an hour. When she stood up, everything had changed in her. The change was obvious. The change was visible. Her expression was one of surprise. She stood straight and tall.
Pastor R asked her, “What did you see?”
And Sarah declared, “I have seen His Glory and I saw my children with Him. They are NOT dead.”
She saw her children! She saw them with Him, whole and happy and wonderfully alive and He told her that they were safe. She saw. And she believed what she saw. And she believed the One who let her see!
God had answered Pastor R’s prayer. Yeshua had indeed taken the burden on Himself, spoken life into Sarah, and displayed his mercy and love, not only to Sarah but to all those other refugees who were watching this unfold, waiting to see what God would do, if He would show up, how this would end.
Now, instead of attacking Pastor R, Sarah kissed his feet and committed to help tell everyone she could what she now knew to be true. And she started doing that immediately, walking down the line of people, telling them about what she had experienced. Will Sarah’s testimony spread throughout the refugee camp? Will it spread throughout Syria. Will it spread among readers of this blog? God knows those who need to hear this story, those whose life can be touched by it, and those who will Praise the Lord because of it.
Praise the Lord, all you nations; extol him, all you peoples. For great is His love toward us, and the faithfulness of the Lord endures forever. Praise the Lord. Psalm 117
Please continue to hold these precious people in your prayers. Pray for supernatural strength and protection for them. Pray for Sarah that she will be received and heard by those she speaks to with God’s love and Christ’s perseverance. Pray also for all the mothers and fathers who have lost their children to this war, that they too will receive Yeshua as Messiah and see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.
God’s blessings on us all,