Friday, May 8, 2015

Mapping and Networking

O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and the knowledge of God!  How unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past tracing out!  Romans 11:33  English Revised Version

The most frequent question I am asked by Christians is about how I meet Muslims. Such inquirers are expecting to hear a fail proof strategy about where to go and what time, etc. Usually I respond, “I seldom plan or strategize.” Not that it is wrong because it is not. It just usually does not work for me. So, then they ask how it happens.  “I don’t know,” is my usual reply. “God just puts me in the right place with the right person at the right time.” It is not about planning the right place or time. Maybe many Muslims will show up there. Rather it is more about one individual who is ready for an encounter and that might be in the most unexpected place at the most unpredictable time.

Three months ago I met “Distressed”, a Muslim lady, in an office waiting room.  She shared with me about her daughter whom she was arranging to have smuggled out of Africa and into Europe with the hope of getting reunited here. Human traffickers or smugglers have their own clandestine maps and networks of moving people from point A to point B and onward. It was a terrible situation for her daughter being held by smugglers in the deserts of Libya. If  Distressed did not get the huge amount of money required by a certain date her daughter would be killed and her kidneys harvested. I prayed for Distressed in her dire state. Recently I called Distressed for the first time to see how she was doing. She told me her daughter had called a few days earlier that she had successfully arrived in Italy. The captain of her ship had called for rescue and the migrants were rescued. Hundreds of migrants on other ships crossing the Mediterranean Sea were not so fortunate.  Many of them were thrown overboard and drowned.
One day I decided to visit Distressed. She has not heard from her daughter since that one phone call after she had arrived in Italy.  The girl’s plan is to be taken to another country in Europe by a “business man” who takes money to get people to another destination. The mapping and network continues on.  Distressed waits. As I visited Distressed another daughter appeared. She was introduced  to me as “Victorious”.  Instantly a memory from 3 years ago flashed through my mind that perhaps this might be the same girl who had contact with a young Christian lady whom I met visiting my church.  Sure enough! I couldn’t believe it.  She loves the Lord and told Victorious  Bible stories and taught her songs. The memory of the Christian lady in this family’s hearts remains alive.  She actually laid groundwork spiritually speaking. Human traffickers have devious and clandestine mapping systems.  At the same time our sovereign God also has His own ingenious  mapping and network system of moving people from point A to point B and onward in order to find Christ who is eternal Life. His ways are past tracing out.

Dear heavenly Father, You work in amazing ways which are clever, life-giving, and ultimately redemptive. Praise Your matchless name!  Amen.