Amazonian Wednesdays 🌴
The following is a story that Ruty, one of our pastor’s wives, related to me a few months ago. These are her words, translated into English. She amazes me:
“The squatters came and took all our crops. Right in front of our eyes, they carried them away. We could not do anything about it. Some of them even sold the fruits of our harvest to other people, right there in front of us. They hurled insults at us. They were very cruel with their words.
“My father-in-law was deeply saddened. All his hard work was gone, just like that. My daughter loves her grandfather so much. She was so grieved by all that took place. ‘I don’t have anything to give Grandpa anymore,’ she said. She had always lovingly given her grandfather a portion of what she earned from selling her produce.
“My son was also heartsick. Both of my children had worked arduously at my side to nourish those plants and bring forth the fruit of the land. After years of hard work, to have it all stolen was painful. Our home became a very silent, sad place. We weren’t talking much; just going through the motions of life.
“My father-in-law almost unleashed his fury on the squatters one day. I myself was tempted to do so as well. But when I started in that direction, I found my voice sealed off. It’s like God put His hand on my mouth, and would not let me vent my anger.
“My daughter said to me, ‘Mom, why don’t we just go far away from here?’ I will admit that I also wanted to move away. But I told my family, ‘We cannot leave this place. We cannot let the devil win. We have strength. We have arms and legs and wisdom that God has given us. We can grow more crops. There will always be more. We are going to have even more than what we had before. We cannot let the enemy shame us. Neither can we act on our rage towards these people.’
“Over a year has passed. As time has gone by, God has allowed us many opportunities to connect with these squatters. We have shared His love with them. They have been powerfully impacted by our kindness. They even asked us to forgive them for what they did. We have invited them to church, and several of them have given their lives to Jesus.
“I shared some Scriptures with those squatters. I told them, ‘I used to not know what was right and wrong either, just like you. But the Word of God showed me the way to live. Here, take this. Read it. Learn it for yourself. It will give you what you need.’
“Now we have a new crops coming up. God is blessing us in amazing ways. My son and daughter were able to go on a mission trip recently. It changed their lives completely. They came back full of new fire. The atmosphere of our home has changed from sorrow to joy. God is so faithful!”
4 thoughts on “Redemption in the Squatter Community”
On a much smaller scale, our fellowship, First Alliance Church, had a neighbor who kept beagles for hunting and sale. He would clean out the dogs’ waste and dump it onto FAC’s property by his fence. Some of us were very angry at him and wanted to block his gate; others wanted to put up a higher fence or set up a camera to catch him and turn the record over to the police. 😠
One of our brothers suggested we put a waste can by his gate with a note politely requesting that he dispose of the waste into the container and offering him a blessing for giving us fertilizer for our trees. 😎
The latter idea won, and the man apologized for dumping on our yard. Interestingly he never used the container but quit dumping. Hmmm, maybe he did not want to help us with our trees!? 😄
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Lol, maybe not! But this story is a wonderful illustration of the same concept. I know the Father was and is proud of you all for handling that with HIs grace!
Salvation is free but disciple ship and holiness can be costly. What a lovely example Of what happens when we give of our best selves
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I am traveling right now and thus behind on my blog comments, so I just now saw this. It makes me SO joyful to have one from you, Jeni! Just made my day. And amen, isn’t this example amazing? This lady is Debo’s sister-in-law, to give you a point of reference. You remember Debo yes?