Poor Men Can Make Many Rich

Here is a devotional thought for today even though I am not teaching yet. The streets of Port au Prince are crawling with beggars and filth…but a surprising number of cheerful souls. I read today in Valley of Vision (collection of Puritan prayers, one of my faves):

If thy mercy make me poor and vile, blessed be thou!

Here I am entering a land of poverty as a man—comparatively—of great wealth. Our hearts should go out to these people who live in such poverty, but the poverty of our nation is so much more dangerous.

 ‘Because you say, “I am rich, and have become wealthy, and have need of nothing,” and you do not know that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked, I advise you to buy from Me gold refined by fire so that you may become rich, and white garments so that you may clothe yourself, and that the shame of your nakedness will not be revealed; and eye salve to anoint your eyes so that you may see. Revelation 3:17-18

The poor are “blessed” according to the Master because they possess none our western God substitutes to insulate them from seeing a world needing redemption. Here I am entering a land of poverty as a man—comparatively—of great wealth. If God wills I will start tomorrow morning teaching shepherds with very little theological instruction. But already I am realizing that I will be most useful for kingdom purposes if I am a student here.

Adventure report: So call me conscientious. Sarah got up with me at 2:30 a.m. at our motel to see me off (and make me two sandwiches). I arrived via shuttle at Twin Cities International at 3:15 a.m. because the American Airlines website said to arrive three hours before my international flight. The only people there were construction workers and those paid to watch for terrorists. No AA employees visible until 4:15 a.m. I used the time to read my Mere Christianity chapter for the week and work on the weekly study companion for Facebook (the last chapter of the book, Phrisbee Phellowship kids!).

Extra space on another plane allowed me to get an alternative flight from MSP bound for Miami and skip Chicago (no complaints here). During the longer layover in Miami I had time to eat and wish my friend Dane happy birthday on the phone. During that call I looked up to see a friend in ministry who happened to be headed for Port au Prince on the same flight as me. Since Pierre Cadet grew up in Haiti and serves there now he turned out to be a very helpful teacher regarding what I should expect during my stay. He babysat me through the airport (“Say no to people who ask to help with your luggage”).

I arrived in Port-au-Prince around 3:00 p.m. (CDT here as well) and was met by Dr. Jim Bearss and two pastors in a pickup (God’s men are better than the armed bodyguard I expected). The weather is hot like my wife (just seeing if you’re reading the blog, Sarah). Seriously, teaching may be tough with no AC, but I grew up in southwest Iowa. I’ll gladly take 95 degrees over 32 degrees. I do have a fan in my room.

1 comment:

  1. Yes, I am reading, Dear. :)

    I love the way God shows His loving care with special surprises! Who would have ever thought you would meet Pierre and be able to be more prepared through his advice? It's great mercy again!


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