Inside MAI Blog: Thoughts on global publishing
"Long since we had hope"
A visitation team from our church decided to call on a family in a rough area of Lima, Peru. The driver maneuvered slowly along the dimly lit streets, trying to find the address. Unsavory characters stood on street corners in the desolate neighborhood.
We finally found the house, and a woman cracked open the door. She looked glad for visitors from church, but also surprised. “People don’t usually come here,” she said.
We asked why. “They’re afraid to,” she said.
We chatted, read some Scripture and prayed, while our anxious driver periodically peeked out the window to check whether his car still had its hubcaps, wheels, wipers and side mirrors.
I sensed the woman and her family felt abandoned, even by other Christians.
So, what must it be like for Christians who live in places far more violent and dangerous than this—say, in Syria or Iraq? To what degree might they feel alone, isolated or abandoned by the Church or even God himself?
This week I received a poignant letter from a LittWorld participant from the Democratic Republic of Congo. Rebels have advanced to 30 kilometers from his city limits. People are fleeing, families shattered. He has taken eight people into his home and turned away a ninth with his meager resources exhausted.
He said believers in nearby areas under rebel control have endured “unspeakable sufferings.”
“The faithful wonder whether God might have forsaken them. They doubt His powerful hand and loving heart. They want to know if He dares understand prayers or…listen to Congolese.”
In the film, “The Fellowship of the Ring,” based on the Tolkien book, Boromir of Gondor despairs in his losing battle against the armies of evil. “It is long since we had hope,” he laments.
As Christians, we know in our heads there is always hope: We serve a God of peace and hope (Rom. 15:13). And yet, what more can and should we be doing to strengthen the hearts and hope of suffering brothers and sisters in Christ?
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