Song of Hope

He is the most remarkable storyteller there is. More than that, the brilliant author. He speaks and there is light. From His voice comes life.

Agape Children's HostelHis workmanship becomes ingrained within our being. He weaves stories into our lives. Stories of triumph, of sorrow, of sheer joy. Stories of hope.

Reading your stories of hope captivated me as well as resurrected a story of hope I have seen in my life, in a place before Compassion.

When He gave me this story, my life became enriched. My heart now scarred with such sacred radiance:

It was 5:30 in the morning. The rain fell. It poured. Then subsided. Then it trickled. And finally, poured again. It seemed as if it were trying to find its place. My heart was trying to find its place, too. The concrete floor I sat on came alive with the tapping of little feet entering the open room. I pulled my blanket close, and Patman falls into my lap. She is a 12-year-old orphan and has escaped into Thailand seeking refuge.

Agape Hostel orphans

Though I had come to know her story, I still could not believe it. There is some kind of innocence still preserved. Some kind of purity still thriving. She opens her mouth along with the other orphaned children and begin to sing to their Father. The only Father they know.

I love the song, but not as much as I love how it sounds coming out of their mouths. They sing in unison. The sweet harmony lifting from their lips, in-between emerging yawns, finds its way outside of the tin roofed building and into the green field. Their small voices wake up the birds; they wake up the nearby pigs, the stray dogs. They wake up the widowed grandma sleeping nearby. Lastly, without caution, they wake up my heart.

Their song is beautiful but not like pretty, polished, rehearsed beautiful. It is hopeful, passionate, praise beautiful. I sing it too. I close my eyes and push my head against Patman to hear her voice. I forget about the bugs, the concrete floor, the brisk air and the reality that I will soon leave this place, but they will not. I want to sing as they did. I want to believe with such resolve that He truly is all I have. Everything, all of me, resting completely on His love. He is the bottom line. He is the portion.

“I love the mountains
I love the waterfalls
I love the blue skies
I love the flowers
Thank you God for making them
I love you God
I love you God
I love you God”

In this tiny orphanage a pastor had taken in the children whose parents had been killed in Myanmar because of the war. Their rooms are crammed. They own nothing, all of it a donation to be shared amongst themselves. All of it with the fingerprint of the Lord’s provision. They have stories I was sure only movie producers could conjure up.

Patman allows her last few words to escape from her mouth to end the song, and then looks at me and smiles. I become weak. When I ask if I can pray, she questions back, “May I pray please? I love Jesus.” This is when I know, this when I see a Love that conquers the enemy. I see a faith that even the lies of poverty cannot defeat.

And this is what is so grand, He is writing stories like these all the time, in everyplace.

5 Comments |Add a comment

  1. Avatar
    Drew December 5, 2008

    Much better on the load time. My computer used to rev up when I checked my favorite blog. Right column nicely cleaned up. Keep up the outstanding job.

  2. Avatar
    Beth Ingersoll December 5, 2008

    Now THAT is a good story!

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    Juli Jarvis December 5, 2008

    What sweet faces in this photo! I would love to have heard the song! Thanks so much for sharing this beautiful story! I love hearing about Burma — my grandfather’s brother was a missionary there 1908-1944. I have all their photos and book manuscripts, and many of the trinkets they brought home. When they had to flee during the war, as the leader of all Baptist missions over Burma, they stayed in India over a year to make sure every other missionary got out of all areas of Asia safely, and when their ship left the dock, it exploded behind them.

  4. Avatar
    Meredith December 5, 2008

    Oh my word… thank you for sharing that story Bri. So beautifully written and composed. So transparent and authentic. Thank you for the challenge!
    I love you sweet friend!

  5. Avatar
    Judith Tremblay December 5, 2008

    So often I neglect to pray. When I do, it’s usually after something that God has placed in my life because I’ve been drifting away and haven’t been by to visit with him in a while.

    I’ve been taught that prayer is one of the greatest priveleges we as Christians have, since we no longer need a priest to pray for us and offer sacrifices, we have direct access to God.

    But not only is prayer a privilege, this Burmese orphan helped me realize that prayer can be a delight. It’s simply talking to our Father.

    LORD, teach me to pray like these children. Help me to see past my “things” to focus on the One thing that really matters!

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