I recently came across this piece in my notes. I completely forgot about it. It is messy and sloppy but it was my process after a month of travels in the Middle East and Europe. Due to security reasons, certain words and names have been changed.
Three weeks here, four days there, stop over here.
1 month of Him awakening my heart, my spirit, my mind.
My heart broke. My spirit heavy.
Yet lifted, light, and full.
My experience can be summarized in two things that themed across borders.
The Need and The Obedient.
Refugees. Homeless. Broken. Exposed. They watched as their homes became rubble, and family members became lifeless, decapitated bodies. Gruesome, graphic, explicit, but reality. Children, longing for closure of their absent parents look up videos on youtube, where their eyes will see things no human, let alone no child should ever see. Their parents, tortured, murdered, undignified.
A Syrian woman sits on a city bench with an Arabic sign. Tears flow from her eyes as she says over and over again “Suria Suria Suria”
“We hate the war. We want peace.”
“We want to go back to Suria. We want to go home.”
Arabic melodies come from a guitar. Wahuj begins to cry. No, weep. “This music reminds me of my home. I miss my mother. I miss my sister. I miss my home.”
“We need to think about the future generation. They need to be educated, or else we produce another generation of bombs”
It’s 4:30am and there’s a mumbled chant across the city. It’s the call. The call to pray to a god that promises not salvation nor hope but requires a balance of works, a balance of hope and fear.
A young girl sits in a mall. Hardness in her heart. She didn’t want to move from her homeland. At night the dark spirits that taunt her no longer phase her, it’s become her reality, just as it was for her mother and for her grandmother.
“The most important thing is love. God is everywhere. I am god, you are god, this is god, that is god. Be a good person. Love is the centre of all things”. Oh but how can one love without knowing the source and being of love itself?
A pilgrim tears at the hearing of His words of love for her. Her job torn from her hands, all that’s left are her two dogs. No husband, no children. She is alone. But the thought of love, unconditional love, it stirs something in her. And yet, she continues to walk, continues to search with a loneliness in her heart that has only one cure.
This is the need. Desperate cries for someone to save them, from the war, from fear, from bondage. The Man in White, the Great I Am, the Only Way. He can save them but who will tell them of Him?
A worker plays music in a camp his fellowship has set up to house, clothe, feed and educate the displaced. His hands pick away at the guitar transitioning in and out from western worship to the arabic sounds that rang familiar to those listening nearby. In his eyes is a fire for these people and their Creator, and yet, his hands growing weak and the fire dimming. His wife is at home nurturing their three children that are too young to fully comprehend the brokenness they live amongst. They are too innocent, they know not of the war nor their increasingly weary parents. It’s time to rest. The worker continues to play melodies to Jesus. All the children join, not knowing the language nor the God that is being praised. He continues knowing the need is greater than his weariness.
There’s a couple, they live in the Light House. Their home dedicated to worship, intercession and the discipling of the nation. The doors swung wide open to welcome any and all who wish to encounter the Light. With tears in their eyes they share the faithfulness of the King in their life. Their hearts devoted to Him, to serving Him, declaring Him and glorifying Him. They’ve made their home in a city of unspoken danger, rumblings, bombings, uncertainty. But with confidence they remain, for their House of Light is Built on the Rock.
The generous one. She educates nationals in her native tongue, meanwhile teaching her students far more than their eyes can see. One woman tells her “I had a dream of a man in white. I never told anyone but I know you can tell me who He is”. Oh how this generous one gives charity to the one who’s kept this dream hidden for several years. The man in White will save her, the generous one explains. She commits to discipling her, through the wavering and through the fear.
“I had a vision of a nation I had never seen before”. They call her The Mother of a Movement. It started with the unknown and has lead to unabandoned devotion to see, the now known, saved. To see the nation set free.
A room fills with the sweet fragrance of praise as the obedient cries out to the King. They’ve left their families, their comforts and their plans behind. They surrendered.
An old barn converted into a prayer room, also filled with foreigners. I look around and see multiple nations, multiple cultures represented, yet they’ve joined together, with one purpose, one heart cry, to see the lost found, the blind, see.
These are The Obedient. The ones who heard the call. The one’s who said “send me, I will go”.
The Need and the Obedient. Oh that one day many would walk with chains above their heads praising the Lamb that was slain for them. That many would believe and respond to Jesus being the only way, the only truth, the only light.
The Need and The Obedient.