Howdy ho friends. Hope you are all well. Actually, I’m sure plenty of you are having a great season in life and I’m sure others of you are in a very rough season (maybe even in a crisis) and others in between. This world is simply that way. So much good and so much bad all in a cocktail. Heaven really will be so great!! But this world is really that depraved.
The Lord gives and the Lord takes away. Either way we shout and proclaim “blessed be His Name.”
In this same regard we have some really good news and some really bad news. (Before that just a footnote- we have not yet heard about Menard’s or the other customer. Still waiting. But thanks for pleading for favor on our behalf).
Let me begin with the bad/discouraging news. My best local friend, Mehdi, the guy who taught me language, the guy who really helped me make this country my home, the guy who I’ve been doing small group with for over 3 years, the guy who got married at our house last summer and opened his house up for small group is about to go through a divorce. Nothing is final but it doesn’t look good. The complications run deep, they always do. The pain and disfunction on both sides go back a long time. They are both first generation believers, but his wife, Imen, is a very weak believer, maybe never actually encountered The Son in a real way. She is not healthy at all. He has his issues. Apart from a true miraculous touch of healing from The One Who Heals this situation doesn’t look good.
I don’t know much else but to plead for prayer for these two (Mehdi and Imen). Imagine the difficulty of marriage without access to faith based counseling, without therapy, without a healthy body around you. Please please lift these two up and ask the Lord to heal!
There is good news. It’s hard for me to move on to good news when the pain of my best friend marinates in my heart. But good news I must share and want to share.
Many of you may remember a post I wrote last year almost at this exact time about a new contact that I named Abe. His dad is a leader in the mosque, his family is a disaster, he comes from a difficult neighborhood. Abe is the name we gave him. Who remembers Abe?
Well, I have continued to meet with him throughout this past year. Mostly it has been one small, slow, discouraging step after another. The guy is simply not strong in character. Around January he came to the national gathering with me on a Saturday for the first time (he lives over an hour away). He began to know other local believers. Then he met us a few times in the middle of the week.
Then finally last week me and two of my local partners were able to drive to his neighborhood for only the second time since I’ve met him. We had coffee, chatted, read some of the Word. Then one of my partners sensed Abe was ready to truly pray to receive the Son. Abe indeed prayed then after hugged all three of us. He then took us to meet his brother, we all ate together, then departed to retune home. When we arrived back home Abe called me and had me talk to his mother, the first time that has happened. He just called me yesterday to check in and see when we will meet again.
So praise the Lord He continues to transform new lives. But oh how difficult is the journey of transformation. Abe has such a long way to go. And Mehdi has believed now for 10 years and has so much still to allow Him to transform.
Lord, we are desperate for your transformational love to grip us all in a fresh way.
Thanks for your prayers and thanks for your praises. Our Lord hears them all!