Martha's observation today:
In church we are told to leave our chairs and come forward. "Come, the Holy Spirit is present! Everyone must speak in tongues!" But when I stop to listen I hear children playing! You are right. What you are telling me and what I am reading (Acts 2)--tongues are languages! and what I was hearing are only lost children playing.
Our studies continue. A wonderful development has occurred.... Martha continues to meet with her church. She related the following, with all the excited hand movements and voice inflections that I love in African women.
"After our worship time, we are asked to testify. So I tell everyone of this sin thing that we have not been told about, that it is keeping us from reaching up to God!"
" 'uuuuu! Marta, we don't know this! Where are you learning this?"
"In the Bible! Three doors down from me is a man and his wife who are teaching me things from the Bible; things I never heard before!"
"Tell us more!' "
"So I tell them more. I tell them to go with me to learn."
"No, you tell me us."
"So they come to my house and I teach. But some things I think I know but when I try to teach it I learn I didn't learn. So I'm here to listen some more."
BTW, her husband is telling her to talk to him, and THEN he will read the printed material, and THEN come to see my husband. I can hardly wait!
Do you find it as amazing as I do that the "pastors" are teaching believing in Jesus in order to be saved and never mention "this sin thing"??!
Martha's lessons continue:
Today, we came to the scriptures concerning what is sin and how it affects us and those around us, including what is called original sin. Suddenly she exclaims, "Oh, I have been losing too much sleep, praying and praying! The preacher is always telling us that our sins are being given to our children, and I do not want them to carry my sins! Now I see I am wasting my sleep time. They must carry their own sins! I now can change my prayer to ask God to help them stop their OWN sins!"
Martha had a full morning of learning today. When I had her read the list of sins that will keep us from the kingdom of God, Gal 5, she asked me what envy means. After I explained the sins of jealousy and envy, she began talking, as only an African woman can:) And it was I who began learning!
"The preacher teaches that man is like God, he must take care of everyone. He (therefore) has the right to take many wives. And the first wife must not have envy (jealousy) in her heart toward the other women. Now, a woman hears that my husband is attending the church; she will decide to go and try to get him for her husband. So you have all these women in the church dripping in jewels and nice clothing, fancy hairdos, singing Hallelulah! Pass the husband!"
I very nearly lost my breakfast...
An amazing thing happened to me on my way to...
One morning last week my gate was shaken. Someone is at the gate. "I have come for you to teach me the Bible." No kidding! Word of mouth in the neighbourhood has done its work. So today we met together for the third day running. Martha was fed up with the denomination she was a part of, never talking about Jesus Christ, but rather to praise the "pastors" who were milking the congregation. "We are told to give to repair the guitar, pay for this or that and our prayers will be heard! Then we have to go to the bank for a loan to please the pastors. But now I am praying for something else--how am I going to pay for the loan?!"
Martha has been a joy to teach, listening in absolute amazement and hungry for more and more about this wonderful plan of God's. "I have been starving! Now I am eating!"
Driving to our traffic circle I saw an amazing thing. While awaiting one car pulling another car, whoosh, suddenly a car coming off the mountain came around the circle and drove right across the chain between the two cars! And made it across. whew!