Please keep praying for this troubled country

You might think from our blog posts that things are okay, but the fact remains that we are in a protected bubble of peace in our area, and many other parts of the country continue to suffer.  We will keep on doing what we can with whatever time we have here, whether it be a month or years yet.  Please keep CAR in your prayers.  I’m sending along a letter written mid-August by someone who must remain unnamed, and I have edited the letter to some extent, replacing certain names and words with “…” . I hope that this will encourage you to keep praying:

Tears of Victory

Beloved in the Lord!

The shortest verse in the Bible is John 11 :35 Jesus wept’’. Why did the Lord, knowing in advance what he was going to do, still shed tears? The crowd surrounding him could not remain indifferent to the sight, and empathised with him : “See how he loved him’’ . We know how the story ends, but our question has still not found an answer. Yes, of course God is able to feel with human beings in their suffering. The Bible says it : “…..weep with those who weep’’ (Rom.12 :15).

The present state of affairs in my country does not have a word to describe it. We have already been shedding tears for decades, and the situation into which we have been plunged by the actions of the S-ka coalition could cause us to doubt God’s mercy. But history teaches us that he allowed his people Israel to suffer in Egypt for four centuries, before sending their deliverer Moses. We do not want to react like Cain, who considered his punishment out of proportion to the crime of killing his innocent brother Abel. Yes, we do deserve God’s chastisement.

Lately, I have not had much strength to write, as if the sheer intensity of my soul’s anguish has caused my system to “seize up” altogether. It gives no pleasure to detail the  atrocities that the people of the CAR are enduring, but prayer makes all the difference, and it is for that reason that we continue to send out information. We are grateful for all that you do for us – may God reward you.

Yesterday I shut myself in the shower to weep like Jeremiah, who said : “Oh, that my head were a spring of water and my eyes a fountain of tears! I would weep day and night for the slain of my people.’’ (Jer 9 :1). But I was not able to. Jeremiah is sometimes known as the “weeping prophet”. But there was another prophet-intercessor who could not weep for his beloved wife : Son of man, with one blow I am about to take away from you the delight of your eyes. Yet do not lament or weep or shed any tears.” (Ez 24 :16).

In recent days the robberies, abductions and reprisals have redoubled in intensity. Since the …, as could have been foreseen, the S-ka have not been letting up. A number of men in the … national army) are in the ex-rebels’ sights. The day before yesterday, journalists were prevented from going to photograph dead bodies at … the base of the current … prez. The entire village of … has been decimated as of yesterday, and even as civilian populations flee into the bush they continue to be hunted down. … is another place enduring its own calvary.

“…The ex prez” it should be noted, who is now in …, stated in his last speech his intention of regaining power even by armed force. This has thrown the people of the CAR into disarray; in the event of such developments, it is they who will pay a heavy price. Yesterday, it was young people in our part of town who drew the short straw. One of them narrowly escaped with his life, jumping out of a vehicle, but was left with head injuries. Another is lying in a coma in hospital. When I learned of this, I wanted to weep, but couldn’t. Oh, dear God …

The UN Security Council was due to meet this Wednesday to discuss the situation in the CAR.  The …- is replacing …, the former multi-national … peacekeeping force. It is to use force where necessary, to restore peace to the country – but we do not know whether 3,600 men will suffice to drive back 20,000. You will understand that the longer this state of insecurity goes on for, the more dangerous it gets. Mother Theresa used to say, “be ready to give a glass of water to anyone in need.” We are doing what we can to help those around us. People are in circumstances beyond their control, leaving them no choice. How long, oh Lord? Pray for us.

Thank you, dear friends and family, for praying, for crying out to the Lord of peace for peace for this torn and troubled nation.

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About danforth

As Covenant missionaries, we are working with all the tribal groups of the Central African Republic (CAR) but are trying to give special attention to the Fulani, a Musxlim, cattle herding, and semi-nomadic people group. We live on an experimental/training farm, near a mission station which has a hospital plus bible and nursing schools. We are establishing relationships with the local people groups through compassion ministries; Roy through agriculture and Aleta through public health and visitation, in order, ultimately, to share the good news of Jesus the Messiah with them. CAR is one of the least developed countries in the world and is currently in continual crisis (since the coup in March 2013), so reaching out in compassion is key to reaching their hearts. Due to the ongoing conflict and resultant ethnic cleansing in CAR, we are crossing the border to interact with our Fulani contacts.
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