Yesterday Easter Sunday in Cambodia we had a wonderful joint church service at ICA (International Christian Assembly) with different denominations ---folks from the Anglican church, Catholic church and ICF (International Christian Fellowship) all came together to celebrate Easter! It was the start of a great day, singing some old familiar hymms and contemporary music.
Christ indeed is risen and the tomb is empty! Praise God that we have a Savior who is the Living God that walks with us each day on our journeys.
David, Melanie & Patty Ens (left), Stacey & Jeremy, Marie, Catherine, Vidya and ElenaLater in the afternoon I went with my friend Catherine to Biek Chan to visit Marie Ens who had invited us along with her son David and his wife Patty and their daughter Melanie for Easter Sunday dinner. Dave and Patty work in student ministry with the CMA. Marie also currently has 4 short termers (all from Canada) staying with her who are at Rescue teaching English. One of those teachers is also one of our Ratanak volunteers from Toronto and also a friend and fellow church member of mind--Vidya who will be teaching English at Place of Rescue for a year.
A View of Rescue from Marie's VerandaCatherine and I spent some time walking around Rescue as she was one of the first English teachers here many years ago and yesterday she had the opportunity to re-connect with some of of her students. For me it was also special to see Theary, my sponsored child who is now 10 years old and to communicate with her and her family in Khmer. I also met up with another young teenager Samnang who has been at Rescue for years. He is now a grown young man, a foot taller than me. It was great to know that Samnang and 13 others will be coming to Canada from Rescue for the second annual Rescue dance tour and one of the places that team will be visiting will be in Toronto in the early Fall months!
Another little special friend I visited is now almost 3 years old. This is a little girl who was so close to death's door in 2009 when her mother gave her up for adoption. You can read her story in the blog titled Bayana When she came to Rescue, Marie gave her a new name called Neang Rua which means ''life''---how appropriate that is, for in Christ, she has been given new life and He has lifted her up from her own miry pit and now sets her in a place where she is showered with His love. 12 For he will deliver the needy who cry out, the afflicted who have no one to help. 13 He will take pity on the weak and the needy and save the needy from death. 14 He will rescue them from oppression and violence, for precious is their blood in his sight (Psalm 72:12-14). Neang Rua is still small because she is unable to walk since she has spina bifida but her caregiver was telling me she eats a lot and smiles all the time.
As I think of Neang Rua, I'm so grateful to the Lord that He has risen for in Him, we see love and compassion lived out in its purest form where the abandoned are chosen, the weak are made strong, and the dead are given new life. “Let the beloved of the LORD rest secure in him, for HE shields him all day long, and the one the LORD loves rests between his shoulders. (Deuteronomy 33:12). Indeed in HIM, all of us who are God's Beloved can rest secure as He shields us and gives us His shoulder to lean upon. Thank you Lord for choosing Neang Rua and for using her to teach us that no life is expendable, every person is made whole in you, every person is a precious treasure in your sight!