Thursday, June 11


I called Wendy Roberts today to talk and let her know that she has a host of people praying for her and her family. She told me that they appreciate the prayers so much. Please continue to pray for her and the whole family, that God will give them the strength to keep going as the days keep coming. I want to share some of what she said.

As I talked with her about Kaleb and how she was doing, she told me, "I just hope that this is a witness to the people here. It's really hit them hard. They think that we're somehow immune to their problems, and now I hope they can see that we're not." Just as Jesus lived among men and experienced what we experience, the Roberts family is living among the Chadians, experiencing their hardships, and relating to them. And it will be a witness, I'm sure it already has been.

Kaleb coloring with Mbai, a patient

"And I hope that Kaleb will have many stars on his crown because of it," Wendy said through her tears, "I want this to bring glory to God; that's what Kaleb would have wanted."

When I asked her how Cherise, their 2 year old, was doing, she said that Cherise didn't understand until the casket went into the ground and they started piling dirt on top. Cherise said, "Mommy, I don't like that." And Wendy replied, "I don't either, honey." Then Wendy explained again to Cherise that they wouldn't see Kaleb again until Jesus comes. Since then, Cherise keeps telling Wendy, "Mommy, Jesus is going to come soon and say, 'Kaleb, wake up!'"

That's the kind of kids Gary and Wendy have raised.

I remember having family worship with them one weekend; Kaleb liked to sing I'm in the Lord's Army and With Jesus in the Family. Both Kaleb and Cherise loved to listen to their Bible stories for worship every night.

Once again, Satan's scheme has backfired and pulled the ground out from under him. In the times of the early apostolic church, Satan persecuted believers mercilessly. His intent, I'm sure, was to stomp out the blaze that Jesus had started; instead, Satan unwittingly spread it like wildfire. Likewise, I'm sure that in attacking God's missionaries, Gary and Wendy, his intentions were cruel- to knock the air out of their chests and send them reeling out of the mission field. But as Gary and Wendy have turned Kaleb's death into a testimony against Satan's depravity and continue to work and testify for God, I'm afraid Satan's small victory has been transformed into yet another defeat.

My prayer is that I may learn to live my life as a testimony like Gary and Wendy's lives, and that by my every action, Satan's plans may backfire. And it will be my prayer until Jesus comes again and wakes up all the ones we've loved and lost.

Wednesday, June 10

For Kaleb

I just got an email from Dr. James in Bere. As soon as I began to read, I knew it in my gut: he was gone, they couldn't save him.

It's one of those things that seems so unreal, like a bad dream that you just know you're going to wake up from at any moment. But you don't.

It's funny how we offer words of solace for those who have lost someone dear, but when it's your turn to receive those words, they only sound hollow and are unable to touch the aching in your heart.

But as I sit and question, "God, why Kaleb?" I do so knowing deep down that God knows best. I do so knowing that while words can never cure the heartache, He can. And so I pray to the God of all comfort to ease the pain until He can wipe the tears from our eyes.

Please pray for the Roberts family-- Gary, Wendy, and their 2 year old, Cherise. I can't even begin to imagine how much they're hurting right now.

"Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, 'Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.'"

Come quickly, Jesus.

Tuesday, June 9

More Opinions Please

This post is not related to the previous one. I think I will start a prayer chain blog, and if you'd like to be involved in posting things, just email me or comment and I'll add you as an administrator. However, I'm not sure when I'll get it started...

What I would like some opinions on is actually a Bible passage. I've read it before, and not thought much about it, but this past year, one of the local Adventist church members in Bere brought it up in Sabbath school. Once again, I had pushed it aside, but when I came across it again today, I thought that perhaps it would be nice to see what other people think and to do some studying on it myself. I'm wondering particularly about verses 11-15, but I thought I'd include the whole chapter for a little context.

Some of my questions I'd like to hear your opinions on are: Should women lead out in Sabbath school or church services? What should be the extent of women's involvement in church? Should women be allowed a voice in Sabbath school discussions and Bible studies? What is a woman's role in the church community? And what does Paul mean when he says that 'women will be saved through childbearing'?

I'm also happy to receive any other comments related to anything in the following passage.

1 Timothy 2
Instructions on Worship
1I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone— 2for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. 3This is good, and pleases God our Savior, 4who wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 5For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, 6who gave himself as a ransom for all men—the testimony given in its proper time. 7And for this purpose I was appointed a herald and an apostle—I am telling the truth, I am not lying—and a teacher of the true faith to the Gentiles.

8I want men everywhere to lift up holy hands in prayer, without anger or disputing.

9I also want women to dress modestly, with decency and propriety, not with braided hair or gold or pearls or expensive clothes, 10but with good deeds, appropriate for women who profess to worship God.

11A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. 12I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be silent. 13For Adam was formed first, then Eve. 14And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived and became a sinner. 15But women will be saved through childbearing—if they continue in faith, love and holiness with propriety.

Thursday, June 4

An Idea

It's been a long time. I'm back, and I have tons of stories still left to write about Chad and Ethiopia, which will eventually be posted here.

I've been going through old emails to see which ones I want to keep in my new email account, and I've come across a lot of things I had forgotten about. But one thing that I've re-found is a whole bunch of emails from when we had our summer prayer circle/group. I began to think about it, and thought:

That was really great. It was an awesome support system while we were away from Prayer Circle.

I began to think about how important prayer is, and especially how wonderful it is to know that someone's praying for you when you need it.

From these thoughts, I've come up with an idea, and I thought I would post it here to get some feedback and see if it would be useful. What if we had a blog dedicated to prayer? We could post prayer requests (or rather, praise requests), answers to prayer, articles/devotions/Bible texts that we find on prayer, and whatever else might be useful in a prayer blog.

So, I'd love to hear your opinion. Tell me if you think it's a good idea, a useless idea, or any suggestions (for title, content, or other) that you have. If you don't want to post it as a comment here, you can email your suggestions to me. Oh, and I won't be offended if you don't like the idea or don't think it would be useful, so please, be honest in your comments.