Bible Storytelling: Clarkston Style
I’ve been wanting to write a blog about my experiences in Clarkson storytelling, but never can find the right words to say. Thankfully, my friend Jenna has a way with words and she has posted her monthly update, so I thought I would share. PLEASE, please, read. This has been my heart this summer:
It is a muggy Saturday evening in the Jolly Avenue Community Garden and 7 Bhutanese refugees have gathered to hear about the prophecy and birth of a man named Jesus. Once again, something has fallen through with our translator and, once again, God has heard my silent picnic table prayers as I watch our low English listener’s walk toward me with weathered smiles and eager ears.
After some suggestions from our growers for a fast fill-in, our sweet Hindu gardener Praki answers the phone and agrees to be there with his wife in ten! He arrives, we ask him to translate, and we’re on! Relief hangs in the air and faces of our patient, mosquito mashing bunch. The wait is over and we will be fine. It has been mind blowing to watch God fill in the gaps every week that His people would hear these words of freedom. However, that familiar feeling “sobering” is always sliding in second as I am witness to the relentless warfare against our Hindu family’s through physical destruction.
Last week, we had to cancel because two of our main family’s were tied up in the hospital at the same time that night. When you compromise one family member in these cultures, you lose the whole clan to a hospital visit because they are simply so familial. It is amazing to see the fight we are in just to gather together for this time each week. Please be our intercessors. He has given us all authority to bind and loose, so let’s get to it.
I ask the same set of questions nearly every time I lead each week. “What does this show you about God? What does this show you about man? What did you like? What did you not like?” This particular time Gahadair*, a garden leader whom I’d helped at the hospital during the week along with his wife Indu, was suddenly someone else altogether! Consistently reserved and faithful in attendance, he began to dominate the conversation during questions!
“So, what does this show us about God?” Gahadair responds, “It is like God is a tree and the people are the leaves. God supplies equally to all the people. Like, He is the tree and they are the branches.” This was both Gahadair’s, and all other 6 gardener’s first time to ever hear of Jesus’ birth! “Gahadair!! I believe God is speaking this very thing to you! This book right here is God’s Holy words to us and it says just what you’ve said!” All the crowd begins to erupt with laughter and excitement! “OoOoOoOOWWWW!!!! …Lots of Nepali I don’t understand but sounds very happy.” ( :
Gahadair’s face is beaming and I notice a shift has just occurred. Our Gahadair, the Bhutanese man I stood next to talking “Raya Saag” spinach in February and feeling a special love for from the start of my position is the most vocal member of the group today, a title his wife, which I didn’t realize at the time, held our first week of storying! Yes, Lord, we ask you would have your worship from this family!!
I can’t tell you the sensation of chills running over my body as I look into these dark, serious eyes staring back at me with the answer, “Yus, this ees the fhirst time for ahll.”
Don’t you feel His love for them? Don’t you sense the fierce pursuit of His colorful bride? Let us join Him where He is moving.
****Thanks for reading!!!!****