How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news, who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings, who proclaim salvation, who say to Zion, “Your God reigns!" Isaiah 52:7
My soul finds rest in God alone. Nothing could have prepared me for the things I saw, the smells I smelled, the persecution that broke my heart, and the faith that others must live around the world.
The trekking was more than I ever could have prepared myself for. Eight miles the first day nearly killed me...blisters on my feet that remained the rest of the trip. Falling - front first - down a muddy, rocky, slope - with my camera in the mud also. More heat and sweat than I thought humanly possible. Very little sleep.
But, God. In my weakness and in my inadequacies - which were huge on this trip - He met me there. Jesus spent many a day walking, with no place to rest His head, sharing the good news. He gave His life for me...and for these precious souls around the world. How can I not share when given the opportunity? I complained, I hurt, I cried...but God kept me going. For His glory and His sake alone.
We were honored and privileged to meet with other believers, in this part of Asia, where all of their meetings take places in secret. The faith they live is indescribable. Continuing to meet, with fear of losing their farm land, with fear for their lives, with fear for their children's lives, having Bibles taken away, no cushy building in which to meet, very little training for pastors, dirt floors and thatch roofs...
I am so blessed to say that despite every odd being against them, God is ALIVE and AT WORK in this part of the world. What an honor to hear them singing Amazing Grace in their language. To hear them read His Words in their language was nearly more than my heart could bear. Truly, a gift beyond description.
With a heart bursting with joy, I can share with you that we have a new sister in Christ. Our team had met this young widowed mother on a previous trip, but she was fearful. Because she has no husband, she lives with her family and out of fear of being disowned and having nowhere to go with her children, she could not accept Christ as her Savior.
But, God broke down walls and barriers and we were blessed to witness the miracle of salvation taking place in her heart. There is new meaning to the words, "beautiful are the feet that bring good news..."
My favorite day on the trip was a church service we had with a small group of believers in a home. We met for 3 hours in the morning, they were eager...on the edge of their seats, literally, to hear us share from God's Word. Each of our team members took turns telling stories from the Bible, sharing favorite scriptures, and sharing encouragement from our hearts. Our team sang hymns for them. They took turns singing their hymns for us. Through tears we prayed over this little body of believers.
Soon it was lunch time...they were very worried for us that we would be too hungry to continue. :) But they were hungry for more of God and His Word! So, they broke for lunch and came back that afternoon for more!!
Their faith amazes me.
Please pray without ceasing for believers around the world who continue to worship God without fear of man, but with very real consequences at hand. Please pray for persecuted Christians around the world who do not have any of the comforts or freedoms that we take for granted. May God prick our hearts for these brothers and sisters in Christ and allow us to help carry their burdens through constant prayer.