Wednesday, June 26, 2013
Many thanks to SparkBuddy DIANEMAR for her frequent devotional postings on the team Girls of God. Today's had to do with Jesus as the Bread of Life, and it reminded me of a friend of mine in Iquitos, Peru. I could have just posted this to our General Team Discussion Forum, but since others also read my SparkBlog, I thought it would edify - and challenge - more people to tell about her here.
Marleni Saurin was the first Peruvian who wrote to me in response to my letters addressed to the church where my former church had supported a missionary. We developed a long distance friendship made stronger since the first time I went in person in 1997. Like a majority of the people I've come to know and love there, she is of humble circumstances. She told me about a particularly trying time when resources were low and help scarce. They had no food to eat - she with her 5 children (the husband had deserted them, a common occurrence).
She related how she prayed, "Lord, You have said that man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God"(Matt. 4:4) So she opened her Bible and read whenever the hunger pangs would hit - and read to her children and had them read. Of course it was hard to endure genuine hunger pangs - harder still to see you own children suffer from hunger. But she held fast, and eventually there was a breakthrough, as they fed their spirits on the Word, and there was provision - whether through small jobs that brought income to buy food, or through charitable donations.
Would that I would learn to go so readily to His Word before I go to the pantry when I "want something"! She is truly an inspiration!
Marleni at her house in 2003
Marleni and me on the boat during the mission trip where I got to know Levi (my fiancÚ) better) in 2007
Marleni and I wait for the boat to take us from one village to another, 2007
Friends waiting outside the radio studio where I had a speaking engagement 2007