Saturday, 2 March 2019

Compassion for the weak!

Compassion for the weak !

 “He feels pity for the weak 
and the needy, 
and He will rescue them.”
Psalm 72:13 NLT

As missionaries in Tijuana, Roger & I soon discovered that the children were hungry. 

We also quickly learned that if we fed their tummies, then we could talk to them about Jesus. Food was our way to show them love and compassion.

Now, after 29 years, food is still a way to get to their souls. 

But food is not their only need.  Other times, they need prayer.

Children for the most part are honest when asking for prayer. Some of their requests shook us to the core. We never had a Mexican child ask prayer for a new bike. But, we have had many kids ask for a job for their dad, for food for the household, for dad to stop beating mom, asked for healing for their body or healing for someone in their family.

We always took their requests very seriously. At times we had then line up, the boys with Roger and the girls with me. We would pray for each child before distributing the groceries. The other children and their moms would sit quietly and wait until we had prayed for every child that was in line. In some areas, mothers would also line up behind the children to receive prayer.

We lead many moms to the Lord through the children's program. Together, Roger and I would pray for the moms. I always found that the prayer line was precious but also emotionally exhausting.  We heard some ugly details about various situations happening in some families that left us drained out of our brains. Nevertheless, we prayed for as long or for as many children and moms were in the prayer line.

Then, there are times where they just need you to hug them. They come to the front to ask for prayer, but their little hearts are so broken they cannot verbalize their petition. 

One day, we were in a church in Colonia de la Mesa on the east side of Tijuana. Pastor Rodolfo was a sweet and dedicated man. For a few years, he also worked alongside Roger & I as our interpreter.

On one specific Saturday, we had a church service with the kids of his church. These kids loved to sing, so we would take advantage of this and sing longer than usual. Afterwards, we had a bible lesson.

Most of the time the three of us were ministering together. Pastor Rodolfo was quite funny, so sometimes he would add his own spin on the lesson and he had the kids in stitches. 

Sometimes he would get distracted and walk towards a child forgetting that Roger and I needed him up front to translate. There was never a dull moment ministering with this kind man.

But, when came time for prayer, Pastor Rodolfo would quickly adapt to the seriousness of prayer time. He would translate but he would also invite the kids to come to the altar. After a general prayer for all the children, then we would start praying for them on an individual basis.

One Saturday, David a little boy about 8 years old, came up front for prayer. I asked him what was his prayer request? He was a shy little boy, but he was also hurting. Just looking at him, I could see that his eyes spoke when his mouth could not utter.

I decided to give him a hug before I starting to pray for him. The instant I put my arms around him, an accumulation of tears started to flow out of the heart of this little boy. He was not crying, he was sobbing.

I took him by the hand, I sat on the altar step and then I took him in my arms. He sobbed and sobbed. I don’t remember how long I held him in my arms. I did not say a word, I just kept holding him, while I prayed silently.

I really felt I could not let him go until he released all the pain inside his little heart. The Lord was healing him through his tears. He never told me the reason for his pain was and I did not ask. David was a hurting little guy. We never had proof, but I strongly believed he had been molested.

By the time he stopped crying Roger and Pstor Rodolfo had prayed for all the other kids that had come forward. Then, both men took him to the back of the church and had him help out giving out groceries.

At times, all a child needs are some loving arms.

Regardless of the reason for his tears, all little David needed at that moment was someone to hold him and show him some love and compassion.

That Saturday, I had the awesome privilege to be that someone.

“Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe
 yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.”  
Colossians 3:12.

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