When we moved to the Mole – we received quite the “Welcome” from the local voodoo groups. We hadn’t been here for more than a month and they decided to hold a 4-day service right in front of our house. They would chant and beat drums all day and all night.
While the service was going on we still went for walks and made sure they knew that they weren’t scaring us by any means. It was Sunday morning and time for us to go to church. So we got all the kids dressed. Levi was on my hip and Jose was carrying Asher as we walked down our steps. There on the street in front of us was about a dozen slaughtered animals. The street was dripping with blood and sitting on our house’s bottom step was a cow’s head.
I wasn’t sure how much the kids had seen because as soon as I saw it I made them all march back upstairs. We would not be going to church that day.
Fast-forward 18 months……
In December while we were visiting the states – we often traveled to many different churches. Wherever we go we ALWAYS put the kids in their classrooms so that we can enjoy the service without distraction.
When church was finished it was time for us to pick up the girls from Children’s Church. As we began to walk out of the church the Children’s Pastor asked me if he could speak to me really quickly.
With a shy grin on his face he told me that my kids had just shocked the entire children’s department! I immediately thought – OH NO – what in the world did they say?
With nearly 100 1st-5th graders in the room the speaker asked, “What are some things that keep you from going to church?”
One kid mentioned he liked to sleep in. Another kid mentioned his parents liked to sleep in. Another kid mentioned his parents were divorced and if he spent the weekend at his dad’s house he didn’t go. Another kid said they liked to watch TV on Sunday Mornings.
Then up popped Mikela’s hand! Can you guess what she told them? “One time we were going to church and there was all of this blood on the street. It covered the entire street. Then we saw a cow’s head on our step and there were cow parts hanging from a tree…. and mommy said we couldn’t go to church that day!”
He told me there was dead silence. I can just imagine the jaws dropping from everyone within hearing distance!
Then Malaya of course had to add, “Yeah and sometimes there are mardi gras and they wear scary masks and chase you with sticks. They only come out on Sundays and I don’t like to go to church when I see them because they work for satan”.
It made me chuckle but it really is our reality!
When Nehemiah came back to Jerusalem to rebuild the wall there was definitely discouragement in his path (Nehemiah 4). Most of it was coming from the tribe of Judah—even the praise and worshippers were discouraged. Ever felt like that? The very lives of those working on the wall were endangered daily and yet Nehemiah said to keep going. I’m sure (cause this was Old Testament) that there was more than bloody cows’ heads keeping the people from working!
In the Word of God, there are many stories of Christians doing God’s work - who have obstacles put in their way as they are serving. These are the stories I want to read to my children. I want them to know that we are so special to God and so deadly to Satan’s mission that Satan has to try hard to discourage us. Some folks say they can’t get to church because their dog threw up! If we say we didn’t get to church it’s cause somebody threw a cow’s head on our steps. We are in the big time fight!
As you examine where you are on the scale of discouragements, take pride in the number of traps being hurled at you and know you are really doing something—and then get up and DO SOMETHING! Someone once said that if you are getting kicked in the pants at least you know you are ahead! Don’t let that stubbed toe amputate your feet of service.