Sunday, October 23, 2005

Escape from the Earthquake: Praise from Pakistan

So much tragedy, loss of life, chaos and utter destruction have combed the countries of the earth in recent months. From the 7.6 earthquake in Pakistan to the home-hitting hurricane in New Orleans, LA, the peoples of the earth are being ravaged. Of course, there are the oft forgotten tragedies of 2 million dead in Sudan, 100,000s in Cambodia, the victims of the SE Asian Tsunami, the list could go on...locust plague, mudslides, bird flu, famine, AIDS, TB and Malaria related deaths all over the 2/3rds world. For a mind-blowing graphic of current global natural tragedies go to:

What are we to do? What is the Christian response to this collosal scale of suffering and death? Perhaps praying Psalm 40.1-3 for these victims would be a good start:

I waited patiently for the Lord he inclined and heard my cry
He brought me out of hte pit of destruction, out of the miry clay
He placed my feet upon a rock and made my footsteps firm

He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God
Many will see and fear and will trust in the Lord.

This is precisely what is happening in Pakistan. This morning I recieved reliable correspondence from Pakistan regarding some of the christian response to the devasataion of hte earthquake. Enclosed in the email was a story, which reminded me of Psalm 40 and motivated me to pray that it's refrain would be sung throughout the nations of natural disaster. I am enclosing an excerpt of escape from the earthquake and praise from Pakistan:

THE STORY OF “EMANUEL”-(as told by Bruce, an Muslim Background Christian leader)

I was walking with people everywhere, hearing screaming and other noises from destroyed houses. Everyone was busy trying to help. I saw a 2 year old baby boy. This little boy was screaming out, saying that somebody should help him. I went close to him and saw that he was stuck in the rubble. Only his head and one hand was sticking out. He said to me, “uncle, save me!”

Brethren, believe me, this situation seemed impossible for me alone to get him out. But I reached for him and started pushing the wall. I tried a lot but this wall was very heavy. I tried again and again. It was hard for me to see this boy stuck and bleeding, and he also was continuing to cry out, “save me!” Finally I sat down and told the boy to ask the Lord Jesus to help him. I told him that Jesus could help because I couldn’t. He asked me with his little mouth, speaking in the Pushtu language, who Jesus was. I said that He is the Most Powerful Lord God (speaking in his Pushtu language). He then started asking Jesus to help him. I then told him that when I say JESUS, YOU ARE OUR HELPER, then repeat this phrase with me. I then told him that I would try to push the wall, but that Jesus would actually move it. Brethren, after one push against this wall that weighed about 1.5 tons, the Lord Jesus picked it up, as if He was picking up a book! I then quickly moved the boy out. I later told this boy that his new name is Emanuel.

How long shall we sing this song? Until the peoples of the earth praise Him forever.


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