I’ve been considering what the pastors said at our meeting. I think God desires our availability. I don’t think He wants me hanging up or squabbling about how I go about handing out the bibles, so long as the bibles are getting into the hands of His people.
I went up the mountain to Toussaint and Jabouin today, to spread the word for the pastors there to start polling their congregations to see who needs bibles. After they put together a list of names, Adrien came up with the idea of having them come down the mountain to me. He said if they really care about having a bible, they’ll come, and he offered the use of his hospital clinic as the distribution point. I thought it sounded like a great idea.
On the discipleship front, the work is so much more intangible. What progress I see is subtle, in conversations, fellowship, and in questions and answers.
These take place in a variety of circumstances.
Some stop over and sit on the front porch, asking quiet questions. Some come by the back gate, and we sit and watch the ocean, while casual fellowship takes place in a soft, open, truthful way.
Some talks happen on the back of a motorcycle doing 45, shouting to hear one another, weaving in and out of tap-taps and markets on the way to Cayes, as we talk about life while trying to stay focused enough on the road not to cut our lives short. Other talks happen on the way up the mountain, on a trail where there is nothing but time to share. Each opportunity has its own brand and flavor, especially given the different stages of life of the men and women I’m talking to.
What’s more, these are conversations that I don’t feel privy to share quite so openly in a public forum such as a blog. There is a level of confidence that I think is necessary to growing real relationships.
Painting with a broad brush, I can tell you this. There are struggles here, just like home.
Some are wrestling with addiction.
Some aren’t to the point of admitting addiction yet.
Some are wearing masks. Some know it and some don’t.
Some realize that the enemy wants to destroy them. Some are having conversations with Evil, and Evil has has told them that they want them to switch over.
Some don’t want me to know they have any problems at all.
Some are knee-deep in sin. Some are up to their eye-balls. Some are righteous.
We’re in the beginning stages, opening up to the idea of actual fellowship, intimacy in a brotherly way. A few people have told me that the idea of discipleship is confusing, and others have told me it makes sense.
It’s nothing but what the early Christians did, laid out in the book of Colossians. Meeting together regularly, confessing sins to one another, praying for others, and reading God’s word. Once the group grows to 4, it’s time to split and multiply. It’s really not complicated, it just requires one thing....to start.
I’m so ready to start. Alone in the quiet as the sun sets at 6pm, I know it will be a long night. Discipleship is nothing I want to force. It has to be natural, and it has to be something longed for. There must be a true desire to know more of Christ, otherwise it’s just one more mask. Until then I wait in solitude. I light the kerosene lantern. I don’t think there will be power tonight. A neighbor has tied his goats all around just outside the walls. All I hear is Baaa-aaaa-aaa. Baaa-aaa-aaaaa. Soon the frogs will begin their singing in the trees, and somewhere in the middle of the night, Mr. Rooster will fall into my yard and begin his cock-a-doodle-dooing.
I’ve read my bible, I’ve reflected on life, I’ve prayed. The 100th mosquito has paid a visit to my ear. The sound of my children running around, the fellowship with my wife, hearing them do life with me, will be a welcome day.