Saturday, August 15, 2009

The Color Green

If you have ever gone on a foreign mission trip you will undoubtly know that there is usually one very large barrier…Language.

As I began to prepare for this trip we were given a list of phrases that would help with our presentation. Five phrases, one in Arabic and four in French was the basis of our communication with our target people group.
These phrases were: (in English)
Peace be to you
This is a new testament
This is a gift
It is free
Have a safe trip

The longer we stayed the more we would pick up a few more phrases but our original five were used very often. So often I would wake up saying them, go to bed saying them, even saying them in my dreams. To this day, the phrases will jump into my mind. The funny thing is you can’t say just one, they always demand you go through all five at the same time. Maybe it is just me but I get tickled when they appear in my thoughts at the most random times.

Anyway, you can see that our French and Arabic was VERY limited to say the least. The neatest thing was to step out on faith, approach someone, let the phrases roll off our tongue (ok maybe that was stutter off our tongue) and watch God do the rest. It totally amazed me when God would take our bumbling of the language and still open the door for people to receive the packets we were giving.

There were times, however, that something more than those five phrases were needed to break down the barriers. I’ll share with you how God used the color green to open a door.

As I had shared earlier my mother was on this trip with me. One morning she was at the walk on gate (this is where people boarding the ferry would have to carry all their luggage for a while without the use of cars).
As she was offering the packet to those walking up she noticed an older lady dressed in a burqa laboring with her belongings in the distance. My mother shared with her partner at the gate that she was going to start praying that by the time this lady got to the gate she would be prepared to receive a packet.
As the lady drew near, my mother’s partner told my mother that she would approach every one else and my mother’s attention should be directed only to that lady.

My mother walked towards the lady and begins with the five phrases that we had studied but to her dismay the lady refused and kept pressing onward to the ferry. A little discouraged but still feeling she was to continue to offer the packet to this lady. She quickly realized that the five phrases were not enough and she began to seek God’s help. Then she realized that the lady’s burqa was the exact shade of green as the shirt she was wearing. As my mother walked beside the lady she pointed to the burqa and then to her shirt. The lady realized that they were both the same in color and looked my mother in the eyes. At this time, my mother again used the phrases and the lady graciously accepted the packet.

We learned that day that words are not the only thing that God uses to get His Word into the hands of others. It can be many things even a color that He will use to open doors. I encourage you to seek God to show you how to reach those that are rejecting Him.




Woman of Clay said...

This is a cool story. Thanks for sharing it. Can't wait to see you tonight. I'm looking forward to my "5 Conversations" class. And guess what, Pam Evans is coming with me! I'll look for you after class and we can talk FLOWERS.

Katie said...

Your blog is awesom, how are you doing? Anything new, I miss our friendship.