Have you faced a situation where the only thing you knew was that it would be difficult? That was the experience of OC worker Virginia before her OC team’s trip to Serbia to serve refugees. Virginia says: “I asked God to fill me with His love, because I did not want this to be just a humanitarian assistance project. I wanted to be really effective spiritually.” (This story is “part 2” of the story from last month, go to Part 1.) Read on as Virginia shares her story or view some video highlights:
Virginia Shares Her Experience with Refugees
“In order to be involved with the refugees, a situation that is changing history, we had to cross the country to reach the border of Serbia and Croatia.
“As a Christian, I always prayed for the salvation of the people of the Middle East, however, being so close to this situation scared me. Like many others, I had prejudices and fears about these people and their beliefs. How do I show Jesus in such a tense situation – a situation where we could not speak openly about Him, nor even share Christian literature? Surely, this would be a perfect setting for a great experience with the Lord.
“One day before the trip, in a prayer meeting with intercessors from Brazil, God commanded me to be ready to paint children`s faces there. As an obedient soldier, there I was, in Serbia, with the necessary material in my pockets.
“After a long day of supplies distribution in collaboration with the United Nations, we went to another part of the city where we had direct contact with refugees. Night was falling and it was dark. I was amazed by their sweetness and gratitude. Suddenly, I saw in that dark place a great light. I approached and behold, there was a group of children drawing! Since I showed them a heart I had drawn on my hand, the first child came, bringing others.
In few minutes, I was surrounded by little illuminated kids, with their glances and smiles exuding hope. I found out that in any situation the child never ceases to be a child and for me it was a great privilege to come into their world, just bringing joy, as Jesus said: Let the little ones come to me.
“Through one of these children, I met a girl named Luna. Her smile shone like her name. She asked me ‘Where are you from?’ I said, ‘Brazil.’ Impressed, she continued. ‘Why are you here?’ And I answered, ‘Because of you!’ Great was the surprise on her face. Then, she said she would teach me something in Arabic. It was the first time someone talked to me in this language, as it was the first time I spoke something in Arabic. I asked her what she said, and she answered, ‘I love you.’ After that, she repeated the same sentence several times showing gratitude.
“I went on this mission in order to give, but my God of surprises taught me that I would receive much more than what I give. I asked the Lord to give me His love so that I could touch and change hearts, but it was in the midst of people that the love of the Lord manifested, breaking all my walls and changing my own heart.”
One Challenge is an international agency committed to bringing God’s transforming love and hope to all people. We identify and work to meet the physical, emotional, and social needs of individuals and communities, providing opportunities for deeper level relationships and deeper levels of change. These ministries include education, medical services, agricultural development, community development, and small business mentoring … helping local people to build a healthy community.