Daily Archives: May 24, 2009

The Snake That Came to Church

The house was packed out, the singing was active and the crowd was hot.

It was at that moment that the snake decided to show up.

I don’t know if snakes think anything like we do. If so, I can only image what must have been on his mind: “Wow! Listen to all that commotion! I believe I’ll go check it out.”

He obviously was a snake who didn’t read the Bible. If so, he’d never have made his appearance. Something about snakes and Satan, Adam and Eve, and Jesus stomping on the serpent’s head readily comes to mind.

The sucker must have been 6 feet long (at least it seemed that way to me!). But that didn’t change what was about to happen!Mr-Snake

Two of the women instantly attacked!

They swooped down of the little fellow like a hawk on a rabbit. The first lady yanked a shoe off and literally began to beat the mess out of the slithering visitor. And she did so in perfect rhythm to the energetic music that was being sung. When it became obvious that Mr. Snake wasn’t too pleased at being beat with a sandal, he raised up like a rattlesnake, wanting to strike his adversary.

That was his undoing.

Lady number two had on high heels. Off came one of those concealed weapons and BAM! Right through Mr. Snake’s raised head, like a meatball on a skewer. Then, in perfect beat to the music, lady number two commenced to remove Mr. Snake’s head from his body, keeping perfect time to the melody. O how I love Jesus…Bam! Bam! Bam!

All of this activity didn’t seem to faze the audience one little bit. If anything, they began to sing with more gusto. I, on the other hand, broke out in a cold sweat, shuddered and started wondering if I looked “manly” enough.

I suppose if I’d been quick enough with my biblical knowledge, I could have practiced what Mark talks about at the end of his gospel, you know, the part about poisonous snakes not harming the believer.

But, all I could think was, “please don’t come over here!”

Tough Choices

You-Choose-3How do you choose who gets fed and who doesn’t?

It’s not a theoretical question, it is very real.

In Ubaúna we have 123 kids who have been sponsored through the Seed of Hope program. Through the support of $30 per month by Americans, they get a meal a day, clothing, rudimentary medical attention and help with their education. The average family income is $60 per month; the average number of people per household is eight.

You do the math.

We have another sixty-seven kids who we’ve registered into our program but for whom we don’t have sponsors. We have an additional 100 “pre-registered” but cannot even consider getting their hopes up that we will have sponsors in the near future.

I had the task of looking several mothers in the eye and telling them that I was sorry but I couldn’t help them. There are hundreds more.

Again, this is just in Ubaúna.You-Choose-1You-Choose-2

In Tianguá, we’ve been given an incredible opportunity to plant a church and serve the children in a section of town that is rampant with prostitution and drug addiction, especially crack. Riding through the streets we were overwhelmed by the number of young teenagers who were pregnant, the open display of drug dealing on the corners and children younger than 10 years old strung out on crack.

We’ve been asked to help ten kids from two families who are in immediate danger. Both mothers are prostitutes and crackheads; neither is older than 18. Both want what Jesus offers; both are unable to break free.

On this one I couldn’t say no. These kids will be taken care of even if it has to come out of my pockets.

Life in this particular fast lane gets real ugly real fast…