“Now when Jesus saw the crowds, he went up on a mountainside and sat down. His disciples came to him, and he began to teach them. He said: “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled. Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy. Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God. Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God. Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”
Matthew 5:1-10 NIV
I am very sure when Jesus spoke these words in the Sermon on the Mount, he saw these people of En Toto Mountain outside Addis Ababa Ethiopia. I always love going up En Toto when I am visiting Ethiopia. I love these hillside people. How beautiful is this lady. Guess what, Jesus is her Savior. She may not have much, but she has Jesus. That is how she explained it to my pastor, Justin Graves. Can you not see the beauty in her countenance. The glow of her face. The joy of the Lord in her smile. “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.” I see Him. I can see His reflection in the happiness of her eyes!
We broke out our picnic lunch of peanut butter, jelly, bread and water. We broke bread with our friends on En Toto. They shared their stories. Kadus, Marcos, Debebe, boys from our homes, served the hillside people sandwiches. Adam Crisp taught the feeding of the 5000 as we all gathered on a hillside outside Addis. I love it when God allows me to live out the stories of the bible.
I love the great big family of God. I love finding out I have sisters in Christ 7000 miles away living in Ethiopia. God surprised me. Out of the blue He introduced me to another sister in Christ. Jess and I entered her home thinking to bless her with the gospel of Christ when she blessed us. “Yes, Yes, I am a protestant also!” my interpretor translated for us. Jess and I jumped up and began hugging our sister. Her smile lit up the dark hut. There was no electricity to power this home. Her smile lit up the place. But as always when we asked, “How can we pray for you?” We received the same reply as all the other home visits. “Please pray for my son. He is sick in the eyes.”
7000 miles removed and the encounter a week away, I sit mulling over each story I heard. Every single one, when asked, “How can we pray for you?” The same reply, “Please pray for my child’s healing.” These people who have no lights to lighten their huts ask one thing. “Please pray for my child.”
Jesus you once said, “Let the little children come to you.” “Lord, I bring you each of the children I met along the way as I traveled through Addis Ababa. God let heaven touch earth. They have no means of man made medicine, but I know the Healer, Jehovah Rapha is Your Name. I lift the little ones as a monument before Your Throne. In Jesus Name I pray.”
And all the people said “Amen” Let it be so dear Yeashu Christo.