"Mama, should we answer it?"
"Yes, children, answer it."
She'd been sick for over a month and hadn't been out of the house. Inter-ethnic tensions in the community were higher than they'd ever been. People were being killed...mysteriously. Everyone on edge.
"It's one of them," the kids told her. "Should we let him in?"
The man, a different race, a different religion, entered her humble Sentani dwelling.
"My child is sick. For five months we've done nothing but see specialists. She's still sick and our money is gone. We don't know where else to turn. Would you come pray for her?"
"Don't go Mama!" The kids clung to her.
Deceit. Conspiracy. Treachery. The air was thick with the fog of these...and he was one of them.
"Live for God. Die for God." With these words she left her home and went with the man. For four days she prayed for his child. At the end of the fourth day, God healed the child.
"With Jesus, there is always hope," she told the father and returned to her children.
We're rich. What else can I say. Every Sunday we get to sit in church and hear people get up and share stories like this one told by a Sentani woman in obviously frail health this morning.
I can't imagine two worlds more different than the world I see here in Papua, and the world Jesus saw around him in Palestine two millenia ago. But the words that he spoke on a long-ago hillside in Palestine are being followed by a few simple people out here in Papua...including a mother in poor health who is following this Jesus down a narrow path. He spoke on that hillside. He still speaks today. He says,
Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you