‘He causes the grass to grow for the cattle, and vegetation for the service of man, that he may bring forth food from the earth.’ (Psalm 104: 14. NKJV).
‘Nothing will ever be the same again’. Raging wars of fear expressed by these seven words from those who knock the door of Casa Grace asking for food. The mystery of broken lives gripped by fear, experiencing the loneliness of isolation, they are without hope, they lack purpose and for them ‘Nothing will ever be the same again’.
Cities under curfew, hospitals, roads, streets under military control, total lockdown with no entry, no exit. New born babies born with Covid 19. Harsher penalties imposed; this is the reality in Romania. The days of queuing for food have returned, supplies are limited and many foods as in flour, sugar, grains are unavailable. Those sixty-five and over are only permitted to shop (necessities) between the hours of 11a m and 1p m. And so, they come, walking roads of emptiness and poverty, crippled by circumstances and tangled lives. They are hungry. They are desperate.
Figuratively speaking I get caught up with my thoughts, especially at night when I am supposed to be asleep – sleep will not come. Last night in the quiet hours of darkness, the Lord assured me (through his word) that he is the vine and I am only a branch, perhaps even a small twig. BUT (my famous but), if I remain in him (and this is the secret) I will display luscious fruit. I thought of the Lord’s loving and guiding presence in touching hearts of the many branches who have sent donations, placing food on empty tables. Tears filled my eyes as I saw my precious families receive basic supplies. My friend Monika and I would have been delivering together; but not in God’s plan this season. Whether I am in Northern Ireland or Romania the Feeding Programme will continue in his plan and purpose. I can only continue as long as we together dig deeper roots into fertile soil, waiting for the harvest.
Hearts have been softened, faint smiles replace darkness, little ones laugh again. Monika surprised the children with the hundreds of Easter Eggs purchased by Dr. Moore and Haribo sweets donated by the Henderson Group.
Next week my friend Estera will be sending images of Emanuel Hospice families receiving their food provision. Please pray for protection as they minister to dying patients, risking the price of their own safety out of love and devotion for others.
To each of you I say ‘Thank you’ for building walls of trust, restoring destroyed lives. We are branches of the true and living vine and we will continue to produce luscious fruit in and out of season.
‘PRAY FOR FAMILIES WHERE COVID19 HAS TAKEN A LOVED ONE’
Lord, where would you have me plant today? I listen. I obey. I follow.
Shirley, April 14, 2020