Saturday, March 17, 2018

A Christian Community Rebuilds After Devastating Fire

A fire destroys homes and a church building in one of the largest slums in Kathmandu, Nepal's capital city.

A raging fire devastated one of the largest slums in Kathmandu, Nepal, six months ago. The fire showed no mercy and obliterated everything in its path, turning 39 homes into ashes and injuring numerous people.

For many, not a single cloth could be salvaged from what was left of their homes. For the believers living in this slum, all that remained of their church were scraps of metal, torched walls, and the lingering presence of toxic smoke.

Samaritan’s Purse staff in Nepal ministered to the community in the days that followed. We provided food, cleaning supplies, and rebuilding materials. We helped with clean-up and prayed with people in the community.

Several days ago, I walked through this once devastated and torched slum and witnessed firsthand the journey to restoration and redemption. Devanand, the Samaritan’s Purse senior operations and ministry program manager in Nepal, and I met with the local pastor and saw church and home reconstruction.

I learned that the Christian community had provided resources and funds to rebuild the church. It was encouraging to hear about and see the fruit of the community’s hard work in the rebuilding process.

We were welcomed by kind faces and the Nepali Christian greeting of “Jaimashi.” When Devanand saw the church reconstruction work for the first time he burst into laughter and hugged the pastor.

“I told you, pastor! The Lord is faithful. God gives. He provides.”

I smiled along with them. The large, red carpet covering the church floor was inviting. The blue and orange walls were vibrant. The instruments played for us the sounds of a lively, worshipping church community.

There I was, standing in a church that rose to life from ashes-a tangible testimony of God’s faithfulness. Over and over again, the words kept repeating in my mind: “Hope in the Lord, for the Lord is faithful and the Lord provides.”

It was beautiful to see this Christian community. They hoped in the Lord, united in prayer, and trusted that the Lord would provide the means and resources to rebuild their church.

I pray this story encourages you to hope in Jesus Christ no matter your circumstances or trials. Believe that the Lord is faithful and trust that He will provide according to His steadfast love.

Jesus suffered and died on the cross for our salvation. In the midst of the fires of life, He stands alongside us to bring forth life, beauty, and redemption from the ashes.

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