A New Hope

On Sunday we traveled to Lorega as a team, and I knew that it would be an impacting time for all of our students.  Lorega is a place like no other.  There really are no words to describe it.  There is no place like this in America, nor do I ever see one being there.

Lorega is life built around death.  Lorega is homes built atop burial tombs and goats sleeping on gravesites.  Lorega is a city built upon a cemetary.  It is a place that often carrys a heavy spirit.  Because of drug activity, prostitution, gangs, and other forms of criminal activity that often occur at night in the area, people often sense a great weight upon them when they enter.  For me, however, Lorega has always brought light, and not just because we only travel there in the middle of the day.  This was the third trip to Lorega that I have made, and each time I enter, I feel such a great since of hope surrounding all of the devestation.  In my eyes, this is probably the best place to share the love of Christ.

The people of Lorega sleep on the tombs of the dead, they build their houses upon them.  The small church that has been set up in the middle of the community has a large burial plot as its cement floor.  The people of Lorega are literally surrounded by death all day and all night, and they crave hope!  I see the Lord working so strongly in this community.  His spirit is moving through there and inhabiting that place.  And praise the Lord that we serve a Master who is stronger then all that surrounds that place.

What great hope must rest in knowing that when they die, they will not simply go from outside the tombs to inside.  That there is a home that rest for them in heaven and the Lord has prepared for them a mansion with a treasure that will never pass away.  Perhaps this is why in places of extreme poverty people tend to cling to the new hope that we present to them.  Because when the world fails around you and a promised heaven lingers above, what a joy it must be to reach for it.  And an even greater joy in knowing that as Christians, the Kingdom rests within us!

The Lord brought to me a word from Lamentations 3: 21-23 on Sunday while we were there.  It is one of my favorite passages of scripture, and is so relevant to that place.

                                              Yet this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope.
                                Because of the Lords great love for us, we are not consumed.
                                                         For his compassions NEVER fail.
                                                            They are new every morning.
                                                              GREAT is Your faithfulness!

Praise the Lord for his faithfulness, his unfailing compassion, and his mercies which are new every morning.  And praise the Lord for His hope in Lorega

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