News and Views
Editor: Aniko Ujvari
usza@galamb.net
Editorial office: Budapest, Jozsef u. 12. 3/1 1084 Hungary
Biannual newsletter of the European Baptist Women's Union


June 2004 issue

Table of Contents

WOMEN AND MISSION

 

The wounded healer
 

Girls standing by the roads waiting for business. My mind is swarming with questions, expressions of sympathy and even feelings of condemnation while I am gazing at them from the window of my car driving along the road fast. I have been seeing them along a certain section of the road for the last few months. My children asked, "Mum, who are these people and what are they doing here by the road in the middle of nothing?" It would have been easy to avoid answering, "Well, well..." But I knew that I mustn't be judgemental. I told my children the truth, that these girls were prostitutes... But what is the truth?

The truth is that what they are doing is sin but Christ died for them just as much as for us. There is grace and a chance for them to start a new life in Christ. How? I started to pray for these girls and also for a clear way from God in the issue and he was not late to answer: through Isaiah 42:18-21. The feeling was getting stronger in me that there should be a new mission toward them. I still didn't know how and in what way this would start but I stood upon the promise of God that he would prepare a way in the widerness and give rivers in the desert.

Gates and doors have been opening since, I just need to notice them and enter. Often the gate means, "Go and pray along the road where the girls stand and work every morning." "Take those by the hand whom God also called to do this work, this ministry." And this is exactly what we are doing. Prayer, petition and crying out to God. I am touched by an intensive experience of the presence of God every morning. Me and all of us feel His presence nearly physically as we pass by the ashes of the campfires by the road which remind, for the moment, of the power of satan, the presence of demons, of adultery and sin.

But we do know that God is able to force these demonic powers to flee and by the power of the Holy Spirit to command the heavenly host representing His justice to this fight. He is ready to save the Rahabs of our cities. Rahab is a prophetic message. The harlot of Jericho is one of those hungry souls who live in your city and search for the truth. "Rahab" is a name of Hebrew origin, and it means spacy place, wide meadow. It stands for the empty heart which opens wide before anything that can bring life to it. Although she was a prostitute when the Israeli spies went to her house, Rahab was the first to acknowledge their God was more powerful than anyone else. While she was living in the trap of her sins, she was open to the fact that there was someone, a greater God, the Living God who is better than anything else she had known before. Rahab was saved by her openness but she was also taken into an amazing story, the family line of the ancestors of Jesus. (Matthew 1:5).

How many people do you think there are in your city who are just as open as Rahab was and if prayer demolished the walls surrounding them, they would recognise the truth and follow Jesus?

Beside the prayers, we have more and more opportunity to actually meet the girls and pray for them. It is shocking to catch a glimpse of the fear and pain in their eyes. I remember Julie who was looking at me in desperation and when I took her hand she wrapped herself up in my shoulders like a child. We stood there for a moment, like a mother holding her daughter. I was crying and I knew exactly that the that the love I felt, the love that I received from my God, was starting to act.

Even the tried and skilled streetwalker could perceive this, as she just stood there speechless, with her head bowed and she was just looking at the ground in front of her. Then she looked up and said: "I have never let anyone take my hand and embrace me". She turned and left but I knew that something has changed; and not only in her but in me also. I discovered that it's much easier to love and accept a sinner than I would have thought before. What I experienced was unconditional love.

I pondered. The attitude of Jesus was before me as he was talking to the Samaritan woman. He did not condemn but uncovered the sin and started the healing process. He talked with people whose company was avoided by others. Hetalked about themes no one would have dared to encounter. He uncovered wounds that cut people off from normal life, from freedom. Jesus was the wounded healer. "And by his wouds we are healed." (Isaiah 53:5) To the Samaritan woman he offered the living water welling up to life.

This brought me peace. If Jesus could see in an adulterous woman the possibility of being born again and a change of life, how could I do otherwise?

Katalin Szenczy
katalin@hbaid.org

"RAHAB TEAM"- a workshop set up by the Hungarian Baptist Aid for the assistance of prostitutes, homosexuals and the victims of slave trade, and for the establishment and running of a "Shelter House", with the Word of God at the centre.... www.hbaid.org

 

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