Greetings, Blog Buddies. I just received Jessie’s Global Outreach Update. Jessie is one of the many wildly passionate, fully engaged, totally committed Jesus followers who worships as part of the MCA family. God’s hand is upon Jessie and she is dancing the dance of the Gospel, currently in an Asian country. When you finish reading her update, please stop and pray.
I’m sorry dear friends for not having written for a couple of weeks now. The short version of all that has been since then is still far too large to be sending out with any expectation of you getting around to reading it all. So, instead I”ll give you brief impressions of the two locations in which we have passed our days.
Mae Sot. I think it’s necessary to keep in close contact with family during expeditions like this because they tend to worry and fret and you can’t have that. But somehow when I sat in the plastic lawn chair that comprised a good bit of the furnishings in the small “office” of the Agape Children’s Home, typing away on high speed broadband and watching water buffaloes graze I felt that two world’s were impossibly colliding and that remote mountain villages should not, could not have a massive satellite dish sitting next to the pond where they bath and wash their clothing. In this, I am convinced I am still very much a child because the same awe that floods an infant’s countenance when he is presented with something novel and foreign fills me every time this reoccurring inconsistency greets me.
Also, I am learning, gratefully, the lesson that is best learned it seems on the mission field. I am learning the lesson of the treasure in the widow’s mite. The treasure is more than a mere examination of percentages and sacrifice, the treasure in the widow’s mite is a lesson of the heart and of perspective.
The Agape Children’s Home offers shelter, stability, a chance for a better education, and of course the eternally unmatched love of Christ to over 130 children from a tragic shared history. All of the children come from hill tribes in hiding. They are Karen refugees fresh out of Burma where their people are being slaughtered and discarded by the hundreds as the Burmese dictatorship is driving them out due to a fear much like the ancient Egyptians had in Moses’s earlier days- “There’s too many of them, they aren’t our kind and that’s scary, let’s kill them off or chase them out”.
Far more than I would like to think about have seen family shot point blank as they run for their own lives lest the same fate befall them too. And yet… praise God for the “and yet’s” in life… these precious children have rasped an understanding of God so pure that I have no doubt the whole of Heaven is hushed at the sound of their voices, the sight of their arms stretched in abandon to Jesus. In their eyes the world owes them nothing and in everything they give their all. Blessed are they and great is their reward…
Chiang Mai. Allow me to draw you a picture. 23 girls ranging from age 10 to 21, all literally rescued from brothels or sex trafficking routes, the darkest corners in the earth. 5 bedrooms. 3 baths. Probably 27 different schedules among them. 1 truck. 1 van. Welcome to the Abba House, please, take off your shoes and come on in. Another prime example of the widow’s mite mentality, this home was founded and is masterfully managed by an aging couple with hearts much to big for their own lives and loves alone.
One of the many stories they recount finds them at a Buddhist temple where dozens of girls are reportedly being held captive for the purpose of “education”. The husband draws the monk escorting them to a different part of the temple while the wife darts into the room where the girls are being held and she finds upwards of 60 girls huddled together terrified and reeking of neglect. She manages to communicate the opportunity for escape and 11 of the girls run for the van and are safely loaded up and all are gone before the monks catch wind of the situation. I was recently reminded that C.T. Studd said it best. “Some want to live within the sound of a church’s bell, I want to run a rescue mission within a yard of Hell…” Well he would be glad to know, I’m sure, that others carry that flame in their hearts as well. Praise God.