Monday, February 24, 2014

Down to the River with Edain St Paul

Another man who works with me, Edain, accepted the Lord yesterday. He is an orphan and doesn't have alot of family, so he chose to wait until today to be baptized because he wanted his wife and children to attend. 

When he came to the door, however, I could see he was deflated.
"I told her that I accepted Jesus and asked her to come today with the kids, but she just laughed at me and mocked me." He said. 
We walked him through the Scriptures about baptism, but then we also talked about how Jesus himself said that there would be persecution, that they would even hate us, because they first hated Him, and when that happens to remember it's only because they have no dawn. They don't yet know Him. Then I directed him to another passage from the lips of Christ, 
“If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it. For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what shall a man give in return for his soul? For the Son of Man is going to come with his angels in the glory of his Father, and then he will repay each person according to what he has done." 

I saw Jean Wilbert leading his cow through the pasture and called to him, "Leave that cow and come to the river." "Ok!" He said with a smile. Pastor Pompee and his wife came as well as some of the kids from the village, and also Gason, the last man in our group who has yet to come to Christ. He was jumpy and afraid to let me touch him, but he stayed close enough to watch. Jean Wilbert poked fun and talked about throwing him in the water too. Gason made sure to stay just beyond our reach. 

Edain walked quietly to the river. This would be bitter sweet for him. An important moment in his life, yet instead of celebrating it with his family, it would be his new family, Christian brothers and sisters, who would witness him going down under the water. Someday I think his wife will regret her decision, but God knows everything, as they say here all the time, and I know somehow through His promise that this too will work out for the good of those who love Him, who are called according to His purpose.
Our dog Bee jumped in first just to test the water for us all, and then Edain walked silently into the river.

Pastor allowed him to declare his faith and made sure he understood his actions, then he took him by the hands and plunged him down.  
My family received him up out of the water, as well as Jean Wilbert and Pastor Pompee's wife, and the children looked on as they always do, quietly watching and learning in the footsteps, pondering in their own hearts about this One called Jesus. Gason followed at a distance as we made our way back to the village, his own heart stewing. 

"I'll keep praying for you my friend." I told him, "You know, God isn't going to stop hitting you. He wants you. He loves you. I know you're strong, but God is more strong." "I know, I know..." He said. 

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