Yesterday was a truly inspiring day in so many ways for all of us. We were encouraged, blessed, challenged, convicted, and enriched in many different ways. It was a full day but one that left us at the end of the day feeling that we have been a part of something wonderfully Spirit-driven.
The day began with Wendy and Pam staying at the clinic to continue their work with the nurses there. They also had the opportunity to be a part of some of the patient care as well. They were richly blessed by their time there yesterday.
The rest of the group went to the White Lotus ministry whose mission is described in their ministry’s name.
The lotus flower grows in murky water on a single stalk, straight toward the sun. Even from this environment, it blossoms into a beautiful white flower. We believe this ministry allows girls and women to grow from dark situations to standing straight and tall, looking to the Son.
Sherrie and Debbie, the directors of the ministry, were such an encouragement as they shared of their calling to be a part of God’s working to set women free from the modern day sexual slavery so many find themselves stuck within. Their ministry to many women is truly bearing fruit and allowing women here to bloom into the women God created them to be instead of what they were forced to become.
One of their brochures had the following poem…
I will change your name…you shall no longer be called..wounded, outcast, lonely, or afraid…I will change your name…your new name shall be…confidence, joyfulness, overcoming one…faithfulness, friend of God, one who seeks my face… – DJ Butler
The challenge for me in our time at White Lotus is in how I / we are also partnering in ways that free women from this horror of our age, whether it’s here in Phnom Penh and SE Asia or in eastern Europe, in Africa, or in America. God has created all in God’s image and part of our call is to be helping all discover this beauty within to give hope.
Eva got to stay at White Lotus and help them work through ideas of some of the crafts and products that the women create in order to help support their ministry.
We returned to the clinic in the afternoon to help teach ESL lessons with the Khmer staff of the clinic. As we partnered up, it was so wonderful to hear the beautiful noise that filled the small room where we were meeting. 12 groups of people speaking Khmer, English, laughing, acting out the words, and so forth. I told Marjie that I wonder if it was something like what Pentecost must have been like – all these different languages being spoken, yet being understood by one another and God directing and hearing it all. Several of our team shared that this was one of the most blessed times they have had so far.
We closed our day with dinner at Tim and Marjie’s home. They hosted our team and many staff members of the clinic. The meal we has was incredible. It was a traditional Cambodian meal that was just amazing. But even more amazing was what took place as we moved from the meal to sharing together. We spent time after dinner singing together. The praise songs we sang were in Khmer and in English and many were both. Again, a reminder of the God who created us all in God’s beautiful image and we see that image in one another. The night ended with several hours of the universal game of UNO. It was so much fun learning one another’s words for the numbers and colors as well as the variations we all have on the game. The laughter, smiles, joy, and blessing was truly wonderful.
In all of what we shared yesterday, I am reminded of something Sherri said at White Lotus when she was asked about the breadth of the task around them. She simply said that God “just says ‘start'”. So true. I find myself so often thinking that everything has to be laid out and set out with a clear, definite destination. Yet God just says start. I am reminded of the calling to Abram and Sarai. God told them to go to a land that God would show them. God didn’t tell them at that point what it was or where it was or how they would get there. God simply said go. And they went.