Yesterday was my last day to teach at Kamilulu Baptist Church. I taught from Luke 4:1-13 on the temptation of Jesus. Jesus would quote scripture whenever Satan would try to tempt him. As Christians we need to do the same. I gave them little cards I made with some temptations listed and then some possible verses they could memorize to help them when they felt attacked. It was kind of sad to leave these women that I have grown so close to over the last several months. Pray for these women as they try to live in the light among dark surroundings that they would be strong in the Lord.
Something I have read recently and really liked said, "Be kinder than necessary, for everyone you meet is fighting some kind of battle!" On my way home I encountered several different people all on a different journey. Here are a few of their stories....
An older women in my bible study asked if she could have a ride to Chongwe so she could get on a bus to head towards Lusaka because her granddaughter had just had a baby girl and she wanted to go see her great granddaughter and help bring her home to the village. This woman was on a good journey.
Another woman in bible study asked if she could also ride because she was going to Lusaka as well to visit her brother in hopes that he would provide her with some money to buy fertilizer to use in her crops this year. He may have it and then he may not. She thinks her success in her fields depends on whether she gets this fertilizer or not so this is a very important journey for this woman. To her it could mean her family eating or starving for this year.
As we drove through one area my phone rang and it was a friend of mine that had seen me pass by. I turned the truck around and went back to visit with her for a few min. She was very upset because thieves had broke into her house the night before and stollen several items that were very important to her. The biggest thing they stole was her bike. See, this is one of the women that helped us that time we handed out the "Buckets of Love." She works with the home based care team there in that area and she uses her bike to go around and visit her patients. She had come to this little town which was closest to her village in case the thieves came to try to sell the bike. She was very upset so I prayed for her and tried to encourage her. She didn't ask for anything but I gave her a couple of dollars so she could get back home and gave her a bottle of water. This woman was on a journey of desperation and hope.
As we continued on we stopped to buy two bags of malasha or charcoal. As I was getting it put in the back of the truck a man came running up with a baby on his hip asking for a lift to town because he, his wife, and two little kids had just gotten word that their oldest daughter who was 18 had just died. They didn't know what happened they just knew they needed to get there. This man and his family were on a journey through the valley of the shadow of death.
As missionaries we have people come to us all the time asking for help of some kind. It is something we struggle with because we can't possibly help everyone. In fact, it can be so overwhelming at times. However, even if we have to say no we can do it in a kind way. As I was able to help several different people yesterday I thought about how our attitudes should be. Sometimes I have to admit that I get irritated that so many need so much and I just can't help everyone. It helps me to remember that each person is fighting some kind of battle and even if I have to say no I can still do it in kindness and at least point them to the one who can help them. We are all on a journey of some sort and along the way good things will happen but there will also be times that are difficult. So remember as you encounter others: "Be kinder than necessary, for everyone you meet is fighting some kind of battle!"