Is there Hope? For HBYC. For McDonalds. For Phnom Penh?

3 Jul

10 weeks ago. Honey Brook Youth Center Office. 

His feet don’t even touch the floor! Oh God! His feet don’t even touch the floor!
Benji and Jace sit beside me. Jace is stubborn. Hard. Angry. Such a simple matter. I didn’t mean it to become this big.
But fifteen minutes out back was too much to ask of him tonight. So here we sit. I listen to Ben’s wisdom, thoughts racing through my head.
I hear A line of child-speech.  I watch his feet kick the sides of the chair. I listen to Ben’s soft voice urging him on to obedience, to freedom. I see him contort his small face, angry words jumbled together.
I begin to fear. Fear the oppression that I feel intertwined around this poor child’s life. Bondage. No question.
“Oh God. Oh God. Oh God.” Silent prayers from a screaming heart. Deep burden for this child.
“Do you understand why I am asking this of you.” Benji asks him gently.
“NOO!” Small hands slam against small knees. Small eyes form into furrowed brow. Deep pain etched across his eyes. Is that…is that Bitterness?
Oh God I want the freedom of his soul!”Silent prayers. I turn my face towards the ground to avoid the tears becoming evident.
More pursed little lips. More clenched little fists. More angry grunts of childish rebellion. What controls this child? What force echo’s so loudly in his head? Jace. Jace. What darkness has conquered you.
Does the secret to your healing lie in prayer? Are we as Youth Center staff shirking our Call Of Duty?? Is deliverance for your soul, for your speech a mere weeks fasting away, a day’s agony in my closet, or a murmured command from Satan to flee??
How far, or how close, is deliverance? What must I do to claim it?
Is there Hope? Is there Hope for the precious enslaved souls of  those I’ve come to love in this small town of Honey Brook? 

5 weeks ago. New Holland Mcdonalds. 

My half hour break has just begun. It’s my last week here. I’ve been trying not to think about it.
I grab my Bible and highlighter and head out back. I see Bree sitting on the sidewalk.
When I first started at this job, she hated my early morning guts, and let me know constantly, finally after two months, she and I forged the early morning gap (We stopped talking for the first two hours every morning. It worked out well.) and become dear friends.
Now, I sit down beside her on the sidewalk.
She takes a drag of her cigarette. “Your going to miss my graduation you know,” she says softly.  She looks away, misty eyes, and breaths in smoke once more.
“Yes.” I say. I look away too. My mind is screaming at me. “How Can I leave this place?!
Who will show them love?!
Who will pray for them?!
Is there Hope? Is there Hope for the precious enslaved souls of those I’ve come to love in this small workplace?

Present Day. Phnom Penh Slums.

I’m walking down a dusty street.
Children running everywhere. Pain in my heart. Oh How I love them already!
I hear my name being called out in Khmi behind me, “Dee-ah, Dee-ah.” It’s a Glorious feeling. 
Before I can turn around,tiny hands grip my shoulders. I take a small child in my arms and feel another wrap around my waist.
Smile lines etched around dark brown eyes look up at me. I smile and laugh, and hold what little conversation I can as I continue walking.
I feel like the Pied Piper, walking down streets with a bundle of children trailing me.
Oh Dear Children who spend your days roaming the streets, how can I show you Love?
How can I show you Love, when you have seen so much pain already. How can I show you Love, I, who am only beginning to learn who Love is.
Is there Hope? Is there Hope for the precious enslaved souls of these dear children whom I have [already] come to Love in Phnom Penh?

     “Behold. I am doing a New Thing! Now it Springs Forth; Do not you perceive and know it and will you not give heed to it? I will even make a way in the Wilderness and Rivers in the Desert.”


4 Responses to “Is there Hope? For HBYC. For McDonalds. For Phnom Penh?”

  1. Matt July 3, 2011 at 2:39 pm #

    You bring tears and encouragement at the same time! Praise God for his promises! Ya’lls updates tug at our hearts. Our prayers are with you.

  2. Alison Yoder July 3, 2011 at 8:09 pm #

    Claudia, your writing is beautiful. You have such an amazing heart… Keep up your passion for God! Praying for you two! Alison

  3. Chelsea Anne July 3, 2011 at 10:04 pm #

    Hope has come. He is here. He is setting captives free. He is mighty to save — at home and abroad. Praise His holy name!
    The LORD your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; He will rejoice over you with gladness; He will quiet you with His love; He will exult over you with loud singing.

  4. Dani July 4, 2011 at 10:45 pm #

    oh, honey……..and with all this battle still to fight i find myself whining to God that it’s too much…..that i just want to go home…….

    i’m ashamed.

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