The People of Northern Nigeria: Fed, Clothed, Housed, Healed

Hi, friends. I have some important news.

In case you haven’t heard, a new video from Boko Haram came out around a week ago.

In it, 13 Chibok girls– along with at least two young children– sat before the camera, and told us, the public, something shocking.
“We are the Chibok girls. …We are the ones you are crying about for us to come back. By the grace of Allah, we are never coming back. …These people are taking care of us and we are grateful to them. …We are happy here — we have found our faith.”

Just like that.
Just like that, everyone who has prayed, cried, fasted, marched, and rallied for their return– every mother and father holding on to their last bits of hope for their daughters– seemed to be silenced.

And so was I. Until a few days ago.

Honestly, just as I didn’t really process the news of the Chibok girls’ kidnapping the first time I heard it, I didn’t fully stop and process this news for a couple of days.

But as I looked at that headline, there was sadness. “Really?” my brain thought. “They’re really going to refuse freedom like that? After everyone who loves them has tried so hard to get them free? …My Dear Jesus, please don’t let this be the Truth. Please.”

Last night, I prayed… and words can’t really explain how I feel. There is a crying, a desperation for this to not be the Truth; for this to not be the end. Not the end of this blog, and certainly not the end for these still-captive young women– if not physically, anymore, then spiritually.

As I prayed and struggled, Jesus prompted me to look at the very first blog post ever written on this blog.

Guess what it was on? Home.

It was on how, even in the midst of displacement and being ripped away from one’s home on this earth, the Believer knows that their true Home is found in Jesus.

Through the tears, and through the pain, this initial blog post– written 3 1/2 years ago, by a person who I can safely say is pretty much entirely different than me, today– spoke to me. 

It gave me Hope: that even if these beloved young women never make it out of Boko Haram’s clutches and return home, in a physical way, that Jesus Christ, the One and Only Lord and Savior of all (1 Timothy 4:10), is still able to save the men of Boko Haram, these precious women, and their entire families. He is still what true home looks like.

“The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms. He will drive out your enemies before you, saying, ‘Destroy them!’”
(Deuteronomy 33:27, NIV)

Because of this, I felt it apt to reblog this initial post, today. Because it’s words ring truer than ever: Jesus is Home.

I can’t say with 100% certainty that I know exactly what the future looks like for this blog. But, I am seeking Christ in it. I ask that you, the amazing readers of this blog, please pray for me, for guidance, wisdom, and vision concerning what the future of ISAIAH 62 PRAYER MINISTRY looks like.

No matter if this report is truth or not– and please be praying with me, that it is not the truth– these young women can still come to Christ. They can still truly come Home, to the One who loves them most. Let’s pray that they do.
____________________________________
Do you know Jesus?

“No one who denies the Son has the Father; whoever acknowledges the Son has the Father also. As for you, see that what you have heard from the beginning remains in you. If it does, you also will remain in the Son and in the Father. And this is what he promised us—eternal life.”
(1 John 2:23-25, NIV)

Everyday, we make choices. Choices on what to eat, what to say, what to do, and perhaps most importantly, what to believe.

It seems, right now, that the Chibok girls– much to our heartbreak– have chosen bondage instead of freedom. Harm instead of healing. Lies instead of the Truth. But everyday, we all do the same thing, if not to a much lesser extent.

It’s painfully simple: Either we can choose to believe that Jesus is who He said He is– the One who took on our sin debt for us, and paid it in full– or not.

We can stay in bondage, or be free. It’s all up to us– and to not make a choice for Jesus is to say “no.” I implore you, that if you are thinking about who Jesus is, and about if what the Bible says of Him is true, that you read here. Meet the One who came to save you. Believe, and say yes.

ISAIAH 62 PRAYER MINISTRY

Home.  I reflect on how many times I’ve longed for it in the past. As a child on her first day of school, scared; as a tired traveler, after a long road trip; as a distressed teenager, needing to be alone with the Lord in my room. I think of how many times I’ve come to my bed, my kitchen table, my sofa, to find rest and sustenance– both spiritually (bible studies, family prayer times, listening to the radio) and physically.  It is a word that conjures up images of comfort, safety, family, and even bonds to one’s personal identity.

Home is a place that houses the material possessions we hold dear– more than that, it holds our precious memories. Home is supposed to be a place where we can be our absolute selves, a place where we can “tell it like it is.” The thought and feeling of…

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