Leaving the ninety-nine for the one…

Not long ago I was in Burundi, Africa for a CfaN gospel crusade.  The last day I was there I had some free time to pick up a few gifts for family and friends.  My friends Mica-El and Matthias were with me.   As we were driving through the city looking for places to buy gifts I snapped a few pictures of people at the market and on the streets to remember my time there.

Streets
The streets of Burundi, Africa…

Mica-El was looking for some fabric for his mother and we finally found a street market that sold some.  As Mica-El was finding fabric and bargaining I walked around to other little shops to see what they had to offer.  As I was walking along a young boy tugged on my pants.  I looked down and he put his hand out to see if I would give any money.  I was pretty focused on what I was doing and I kind of brushed him aside and went on my way.  A few minutes went by and I felt another tug on my pants.  It was the same boy who previously was begging for money.  This time I stopped what I was doing, and I took a good look at the boy.  I was shocked by what I saw.  They boy was maybe 4 years old.  His hair was filthy.  His shirt had numerous holes in it and looked like it had NEVER been washed.  His shorts were a filthy mess, and he wasn’t wearing any shoes.  In fact his feet looked so dirty and callused that perhaps he never owned a pair of shoes.  I looked around trying to find his parents or a brother or sister.  There was no one to be found.  He was just wondering around begging for money with no one looking after him and no one that seemed to care about him.  I came to the conclusion that the boy must be an orphan.

I guess I could have just walked away from the situation but I felt the Father’s heart for this boy.  I began to see him the way God saw him.  He was a frightened little boy that just needed someone to love him and care about him.  I told the boy to follow me and we went on a search to find him some new clothes.  After lots of bargaining I finally was able to buy him a brand new shirt, a pair of shorts, and a pair of sandals for $10.  Before I gave him the clothes I gave him a big hug and started praying for him.  I don’t think he was used to people hugging him because he was stiff as a board.  Perhaps he had never really felt love coming from another human being before.  As I was praying for him I spoke life into him and broke rejection and curses off his life.  I blessed him and prayed that he would come to know Jesus and experience the love of the Father.  He didn’t speak the same language as me so he didn’t understand what I was saying, but in situations like these I think your actions speak louder than your words anyway.  I gave him the new clothes and he immediately put them on and left his old ones in the street.

 

IMG_4515
Showing the love of Jesus to a poor boy in Africa

The venders around me didn’t understand why I was being so nice to this poor orphan boy.  When I was buying his new set of clothes they actually tried to overcharge me…  As we were driving away from the market I watched the little boy with a HUGE smile on his face going up to the venders and showing off his new set of clothes.  I am sure for him it was one of the highlights of his short life.

The night before I met this little boy Evangelist Daniel Kolenda gave me time to minister to 200,000 people at the CfaN crusade here in Burundi.

ministering
Ministering to 200,000 people at a CfaN gospel crusade in Burundi, Africa

I can honestly tell you that what I did for this little boy was just as significant in the eyes of God, and to me,  as ministering to the masses.  I felt like God sovereignly placed this boy in my path this day so He could reveal His love to him.

This is the heart of our Heavenly Father!  He leaves the ninety-nine for the one!  We can’t be so busy in our daily lives that we miss the people that God places right in front of us.  Each day is a day to be Jesus with skin on to a lost and dying world.  In Luke chapter 15 we can get a glimpse into the heart of God for people like this little boy…

Luke 15:4

“Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Doesn’t he leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it?”  -Jesus

fathers love
Our Heavenly Father leaves the ninety-nine for the one

This is what God does!  He will leave the ninety-nine to find the one.  He longs to use us so that people can see the Father’s love through us…  We are His hands and feet extended.

Let’s leave the ninety-nine for the one and represent Jesus well…

Paul

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Leaving the ninety-nine for the one…