It was my first trip into China and Samuel Lamb is smiling at me!! The wounds of Somalia, physical, emotional, and spiritual could still be seen and felt in the rear view mirror of my soul. How could a culture fall so deep to starve, molest and kill its own peoples by the hundreds of thousands? How could wickedness hunt down believers in Jesus and kill all they find until only four were left alive?
We had so many questions and were on a journey among believers in persecution to find answers.
I was in Guangzhou, China, sitting at the feet of believers when they asked me if I wanted to meet Samuel Lamb. (see Christian History Institute, May 5, 2020 for story). “Is it safe for him?” I asked.
These young adult believers looked at each other and laughed.
Days later I’m sitting quietly in a corner, the only Westerner, in a crowded, upper room above a loud market. It was packed with fifty plus souls listening to a gentle man of God who had spent decades of his life in Chinese prisons. As he taught about faith and loving one’s enemies, he said, “In this room are three security police I recognize. They mistreated me when I was in their fine prison. I’m so glad they are here today.” He looked directly at these three men and continued, “I’ve wanted to see you to tell you three things; I love you. I forgive you. God has brought you here today so that you might believe in Jesus and have eternal life.”
My soul was pierced as if by a rusty spike. We were on a post-Somalia journey to find answers to scores of questions that still haunted our souls. Samuel Lamb’s offer of forgiveness to his persecutors was a shout from heaven declaring that our need, my need, was not so much answers to life’s questions.
My need was for more of Jesus.
Samuel Lamb, with scars unhealed apparent in his flesh made heaven’s case that healing comes not in knowing more of how the world works. Healing comes by being loved by Jesus and loving others as He first loved us.
Samuel Lamb was talking to the PSB (Public Security Bureau), China’s security police. But he was looking at me.
Let’s be those people. Our world is in crisis and people are afraid. Fear makes us hoard weird items from the grocery. Fear causes us to lash out at government leaders and perceived political adversaries. Fear causes hearts to pound, as we worry about jobs, house payments and that, even now, a virus might be racing through our blood stream. Fear treads on our sleep, yells at our children, and wounds our marriages.
Fear makes us a victim.
Jesus brings peace, when peace makes no sense.