Happy New Year! We are currently in Michigan – enjoying a few days with children and grandchildren – it’s wonderful! We fly back to Kathmandu on Monday, and once we get settled back there, we’ll write more about our travel adventures. In the meantime, here is a short story we wanted to share. Please know we are only fellow servants – we are so thankful for each of you and for the work you are doing in the places God has planted you!
In early December, I (Debbie) escaped to Pokhara for 2 days. I hadn’t been away from Tansen for over 2 months – and it is impossible to “escape” from work unless one actually physically leaves Tansen – and I needed a small break.
I got up the second morning – thinking to get a cup of coffee, and go sit at the lake and work on my bible study. I found a nice little seat near the lake, settled myself with my drink and books, and started to read.
Maybe 10 minutes later, I heard a voice saying, “Namaste”. This is the greeting in Nepal – but I had earbuds in listening to my bible study, so I ignored it. It happened again – and a third time. I turned, and there was an old man with his wife – obviously not aware that someone sitting with earbuds in with a book and a coffee wanted to be left alone!
So – I said hello. He started to share his story – he and his wife needed money. They didn’t have a house, and had come down the hill to beg for money to eat that day.
Well – I had an internal struggle. Here I was, sitting trying to do a bible study – something God wants me to do, right? But – here was a couple asking for help…. What would Jesus do???
So – I put my stuff into my bag, and said if the man and his wife were hungry, I could get them some food and tea. I’m not sure I was very gracious about it. We walked down the path, and I found out that this couple actually had 2 living children – one with a previous wife and one in a boarding school. (They had one son who had died.) They owned land, but didn’t want to sell it in case their children wanted it later (when they are grown). They have other family, but said they didn’t get help from them.
I don’t always understand people as well as Les does, but I wanted to try to find out about their situation. We got to a tea shop, and I got them some bread, tea and some snacks. They then asked for money for daalbhaat (a rice meal.) Usually we don’t give money, but I gave them a little cash to use for purchasing some food – and I gave it to the wife asking her to make sure that is what it was used for! I also told them the reason I was trying to help was because of Jesus and His love for me. I encouraged them to go to church both to get help and to learn more about Jesus. I left them there – feeling like I hadn’t really done anything to make a difference in their lives. The problems these people are facing are much more than a cup of tea, or even a plate of daalbhaat, could solve.
I didn’t write this because I want you to think I was being a “good Christian”. I don’t always do the right thing – and even when I do, I don’t always do it with a good attitude. (I still haven’t gotten back to that bible study….) We all face small decisions in our days that we wonder about – did it make a difference? I pray for this couple – and so many more like them who don’t have what they need and have no easy way to get help. And I pray that God will use even a reluctant servant like me.