While visiting with some of our closet neighbor friends, two young women, skirt-and helmet-clad, drove by on a scooter. The neighbors pointed them out, saying they had come by to teach them about God.
Really? I thought.
They neighbors went on to tell about how people are always coming by to teach them about God.
Then, one of the ladies mentioned that some Christians had recently given her a ride home from the provinces. She off-handedly stated that her older sister is a Christian and had a headache when they were there.
Since she was a Christian, our neighbor said, she knew what to do. She prayed. Do you know how to pray?
I have to say that I was dumbfounded. Had there been some incredibly disastrous lingual misunderstanding here? Did these neighbors, who we have been talking with for the last 2 years, not know we were Christians here to tell them the Good News!?
(This was such a Pineapple Story moment.)
Thankfully, I found my tongue and told her, indeed, I know how to pray. We pray about everything, but God doesn’t just give us what we want, I told them.
Why not? They asked.
Palm God is the Master God. He holds life and death in His hand. He can give it, and He can take it. He decides. I said, feeling a bit like someone else was talking (and I think He was).
I have made this statement three times in this country when prompted by the Spirit. Each time the result has been the same, but I did not recognize it for what it was until this instance when I saw the look on Sombo and Chantha’s faces.
They had the fear of the Lord - deep, awed fear – the kind of fear that allows a brief glimpse of Satan’s knowledge of the power of God, a deep wound of memory remembering how He crushed his head and brought salvation to all mankind…and might be about to do it again in these human hearts.
Oddly enough, I went home discouraged, feeling like I had not been able to communicate well in Khmer and feeling like, with all my responsibilities as a mom, I had no way to bring the Gospel to these people. They are ready, no doubt, but they told me of all the contradicting things they were being told. They seemed confused at why the story wasn’t the same from everyone.
(Indeed, why isn’t it?)
I spent a few moments praying while the children played outside with the neighborhood kids, and then it hit me:
"The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom" (Prov. 1:7).
Let this be the beginning. Do Your work despite us – all of us!