I just recently returned from Cambodia where I spent five weeks teaching English using the Bible. While I was there I met a sweet 42 year old Cambodian lady. She has a story that needs to be told. When she was a teenager during the Khmer Rouge years her mother was killed and she was raised by her father and later, his new wife. In April 2011she was working as a house keeper at a massage shop in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. She worked directly across the street from the BEST Center where I taught English. A small church with a membership of approximately 45 people meets at the BEST Center every Sunday between 4:00 PM and 6:00 PM. The church was having a party in April 2011 to celebrate the Khmer New Year. She saw the crowd and she ask her boss what was going on? Her boss told her it was nothing just some church group having a party. She got excited and told her boss she had to go to the party. She ran across the street and "butted in line"in front of people waiting to sign in. In a very loud voice she said. I love Jesus! Can I come to your party? I will come to church I promise. She caused such a commotion that the Director of the Center agreed to let her come to the party. It turns out that she had attended another church and she told them she wanted to be baptized. They told her she would have to wait until they took a group to the coast. She said she could not wait and for two months she had been praying for God to show her a church where she could get baptized. She told her boss that she was going to become a Christian. Her boss told her that if she became a Christian he would fire her. Her boss was a man of his word. He fired her when she became a Christian. At this point she had no job, no money, and no place to live. She found a house with a small mat in a room where she could pay to sleep. She was just like Jesus. She had no place to call home. Jesus said "the foxes have holes and the birds have nests but the Son of Man has no where to lay his head."
She found another job working seven days a week as a night security guard. They would not let her off to go to church. She begged them to let her attend church. Finally they grew tired of her constant requests so they agreed to let her attend church every other week. This would not do so she quit her job and found another job as a house keeper working for a couple seven days a week. The lady of the household agreed to let her attend church services but she would not let her off to attend any other church activities. So every Sunday afternoon she rides her bike for 30 minutes to a parking lot at a hospital. The Director of the BEST Center picks her up in a van and takes her to church services. When she gets home the man of the house where she works makes fun of her for attending church. He is usually drunk and he often tells her she cannot go to church anymore. She tells him that if she cannot go to church to worship her God she will quit. The next morning the man's wife tells her how sorry she is for the way her husband acted and she begs her not to quit.
How many people in America do you know that would go through everything she goes through just to attend church? "God please forgive me when I take for granted my time of worship. Please forgive me for letting the things of this world distract me during worship."
This sweet lady has no idea that she could serve as a role model for all Christians.
Thank you Lord for her example of faith.