Wednesday, May 3, 2017
TO HELL WITH HER, SHE'S ALWAYS BEEN THAT WAY!
"She's always been that way." This was a community's excuse used to ignore the plight of a Muslim woman in a Muslim country living in filth. Recently, a good friend of mine returned from a mission trip to a Muslim country. To protect my friend, I will not reveal his name, nor the country he visited, as he plans on returning. What I will reveal is the miracle which took place in the life of a poor woman, neglected and abandoned by her family and community.
As my friend related this story to me three nights ago, I felt compelled to share it here. In a small, run down, trash filled house in the Middle East, lived a woman whose life was changed by the name of Jesus Christ. This poor woman was living in squalor as trash completely covered the floor of her home. This was not trash as one would envision, this trash was rotten chicken parts, food refuse, and other bio nastiness. The woman herself was confined to a single chair from which she was physically unable to get up due to infection eating both her legs. Food was brought in but no efforts to care for the woman's other needs were made. As the woman sat in her own filth, unable to rise from her chair, surrounded by rotting refuse, my friend inquired of the community as to why no one lifted a finger to help her.
"She's always been that way," was the response. "She's always been that way," was the excuse to ignore the horrible plight of a fellow human being in need. "She's always been that way," was reason enough to allow a woman to exist in terrible pain from infection and remain trapped in filth. Not only did the community not help this woman, they were clear that no one else would be permitted to help her either. My friend's hear broke for this woman and as he prayed for an answer to her situation, God clearly spoke to him about praying over her in the name of Jesus Christ. My friend went to her home with food and asked permission to pray with her. For a Muslim woman, in a Muslim nation to allow an American Christian man to pray with her is a miracle in itself.
My brother in Christ prayed over this woman, in the name of Jesus, asking God to intervene in her life. The woman thanked my friend and he left. Days later, my friend returned and found that some of the trash had been removed from the home. After being prayed for, the woman received a visit from her family who began to move some of the trash out of her home. My friend dropped off food, prayed the name of Jesus over the woman again and left. The next time my friend dropped by, all the trash was removed and the woman had received medical treatment for her infection. My friend shared Jesus with the woman, dropped food, prayed with her and left. The last time my friend saw this woman, she was sitting outside in the sun for the first time in a very, very long time. She was overjoyed, shared her gratitude and faith in Christ with my friend and a few days later she died. The woman is in the presence of God, right now, because someone did not accept "she's always been that way," as an excuse to write her off.
All around us are people who seem hopeless. No one is a lost cause. How many people do we fail to reach out to or think are beyond reach because, "they have always been that way?" By labeling someone as "always been that way", we find an excuse to ignore needs and basic human kindness. The guy addicted to drugs, "he's always been that way", the gal who is reckless and promiscuous, "she's always been that way." The man who has a terrible disposition and seems to derive pleasure by making those around him miserable, "eh, he's always been that way." Writing someone off as having always been that way is spiritual laziness at best and damnable neglect at worst. What is really being said is, "To hell with them, they've always been that way."
"They've always been that way" may be just the lie Satan will use to keep believers from reaching out to a lost soul in need of salvation. "Always been that way," may be the very lie used to send a person God loves to hell. Not everyone will respond to the Gospel message, not everyone will change and turn to Christ, but, don't be the person who stood by and watched a life go down the drain.
If you are a believer, and you are reading this, chances are, someone cared enough about you to share the Gospel and lead you to Christ. Per chance, God is placing a lost cause person on your heart right now, someone who has "always been that way." God loves them and so should you - now... what are you going to do about it?