The Irony of God
It's so easy to experience something and begin to lose the memory of it. From all of our mission trips over seas I have seen and experienced some incredible things and they often stay in my journal or my head. I have felt the Lord encouraging me to share these stories. Stories are such a powerful way to speak to people and I don't want these stories to stay fading away at the bottom of my bookshelf, they deserve to be shared. It also helps me to keep them alive in my heart; to not let the power of those moments dissipate. This is from about 4 years ago when Ben and I went to Thailand, a nation that is 93.6% Buddhist, where there are temples and golden statues around every corner and people lining up to bring offerings and bow to the man made images. It's a place I truly grasped the jealousy of the Father and understood his heartache for His children to know Him. This experience fuels why Ben and I do what we do, our vehicle is shoes through Feet That Move but our purpose is to bring the gospel to those who have never heard or understood this Love that changes and saves hearts.
“Have you heard of Jesus?”
“Can we tell you about Him?”
"Yes." The Thai man wrapped in orange replied to a crowd of Americans and Brazilians surrounding him with eager hearts to bring him into the realization of one God who loves him.
I watched the girls stretch their hands out to greet him and he kindly said he could not touch a woman; it would make him impure and he would have to go through cleansing before he could enter the temple again. He continued to ask numerous questions about this God we were telling him about. He spoke English very well so we did not need a translator. After his questions were satisfied we asked if we could pray for him. Of course we could, he had many gods he prayed to, why not pray to ours. As we prayed we could feel the Lord’s presence, we could all feel it, the wind brushed our faces and the leaves danced and spun from the tree above us, nature could feel it too. After we prayed He said,
“Wow, I could feel something…”, even the Buddhist monk could recognize the presence of the King of kings.
Even though it might be a stretch I thought it wouldn’t hurt to at least extend the offer to accept Christ. He might say no, or he might add him to his many other Gods but why not plant a seed, open the door for Jesus to move in his heart. Being a woman and knowing how he might respond to me I went to one of the Brazilian men and asked him to ask the Buddhist monk if he would like follow Jesus. He asks the monk and he nods yes. Then the Brazilian man turned to me and said “Stacy would you lead him in the prayer?"
I pause in surprise; the monk looks at me expectantly.
“Okay you can repeat after me…”
“I accept that I am a sinner”
“I accept that I am a sinner”
“ …and that you died for me.”
“and that you…”
Wide eyed the Buddhist monk looks at me with astonishment like I told him the greatest news he had ever heard. I looked back probably with eyes just as big.
“Your God died for me?” he asks.
This man who moment by moment of every day is constantly giving to gods made by man, gods who are asking of him, wanting of him, he has the realization that the God of all Gods died for him. This God does not ask of him but He gave His life for him, so that He could be with him.
We continue with the prayer and he asks Jesus to come into his life. A woman who he could not touch, who would make him impure brought him the only gift that could make him fully pure. A woman who is unclean led him to the one who makes him clean. God speaks every language, he breaks boundaries and barriers, He does not follow the rules and He is jealous for His children. God wants us to take his love to the ones who do not know it, they deserve the offer and the lamb that was slain deserves the reward of His suffering.