Seeing God at Work
By Rev. Allen “Chip” Grammer, pastor, Sherwood Presbyterian Church Fayetteville, NC
Every Sunday I ask my congregation two questions: Where have you seen God this week? And, what is God saying to you? I believe it is important for people to look for God at work to help strengthen their faith. We often do not look and therefore we do not see. The second question focuses on our listening to the Holy Spirit - something that we all need to do better. In this post, I want to answer the first question.
On the flight over from Dulles I met David, a Kenyan, who had great faith. He spoke with passion about the plight of the South Sudanese refugees and how God had not abandoned them. But man, in the guise of leaders, had allowed an evil presence to temporarily prevail. His faith in the power of God and the faith of the Sudanese people was so strong that I took great hope that this great burden was temporary in nature and that God would not only prevail, but would use it to further his glory. David said that the church would have to take the lead in bringing peace to South Sudan.
Shortly after our arrival we were having tea with the leaders of the Bethel Synod. A jovial retired Ethiopian pastor and his wife joined us. I saw God’s glory on his face as he recounted his life. There had been many struggles but also many joys. He spoke of the Holy Spirit telling him to go across the U.S. and pray for the cities and towns. He and another man bought an old Datsun truck and began their journey. At last the truck died in the middle of nowhere. The other man tried to fix it, to no avail. They were desperate. The pastor said he brought his fist down on the hood three times saying, “In the name of Jesus, fix this truck.” Then he told the driver to turn the key and start the truck. It started immediately and they had no more troubles with the truck on their mission. I asked him if he was surprised that the truck started. He said, “No. When you are doing God’s will, he will make a way.”
While at the Bethel compound I saw a young man walking every day around the compound. He was doing all kinds of strange exercises with his legs. Ochan Omod had been stricken with sudden paralysis of his legs and relegated to a wheelchair for three months. Prayers from many had enabled him to walk again. The faith and joy I saw in this young man was contagious and a true testimony of the power of God.
Finally, our team met with Peter Gui Lual, Moderator of the Presbyterian Church of South Sudan, about whom Jeff wrote previously. He spoke passionately about the plight of his people and how the government did not care. Peter said that all the churches had agreed to take the lead and bring peace to South Sudan. The wise warrior, who had seen many spiritual battles, exuded great faith in the power of God.
In each of these cases I felt like I was on Holy Ground. There was no doubt that God was at work in these men. I came away with great hope for the future of South Sudan and a renewed desire to be a bright light to the glory of God for all to see.