Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: BEACH (12/05/19)
TITLE: First Trip to the Beach
By Ramona Cook
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He had been a missionary to India for many years. He assured me that my name would be popular in India because it begins with Ra. Ra is The Sun God.
We struck up a conversation and I learned that he was trying to find groups to sponsor some refugees to America from a refugee camp in Thailand. Some of them had been there for considerable time, and most if not all of them were from the Country of Burma, which after the Communists took over was renamed Myanmar.
He said he had sponsors for the individual persons but there was a family of 5 that he was having difficulty placing. It struck a cord of need in my heart, so I approached the appropriate Council in my Church and they flatly refused, saying 5 people were too many to sponsor.
I am not aware of anyone having called me pesky but I was. Every time we met I brought up the need until finally they said yes.
None of us were ever sorry we said “yes.”
The necessary things were done in advance of the Wie Family arrival: renting an apartment, furnishing it with all household needs, coordinating who would be assisting with each function they would need, such as, getting them established with a medical facility, helping to find, or to provide work, and so much else.
They were met at the airport, bringing nothing but the clothes on their backs and they were taken to their new home. Upon entering the father sat down on the couch and cried a river of tears, he was overwhelmed with the provision of a home for his family that he had lost hope of having.
He had fought in the Resistance Army of Burma for 22 years and upon the loss of the war the family had escaped to Thailand. He was too thin and bent, his complexion sallow, he looked aged when in fact he was only in his mid forties.
I saw him about five years later and he was so healthy looking, his hair was full and shining, his complexion was bright, and his English was pretty good.
The Church stood with them in great style assisting them with needs, but soon they were self supporting.
They had gotten jobs as janitors at the local University and after a few years had bought a Condo in one of the County’s nicer areas.
I discovered early that the wife was a daughter of a Christian Minister in Burma. I inquired of her what was the Denomination of the Church? In her broken English she assured me, “Holy Spirit Church!” “Well,” I thought, “There ought not be any other kind.” I was sure that many prayers had ascended to the Father for this sponsorship for them to leave the refugee camp.
So, where does the Beach story come into this?
None of them had ever been to the beach. I felt compelled to take care of that, so we went to the Beach. The Father would not go, but Mother and teenagers did. We could go for only the day, so we left early and returned late. They were a joy to behold as they looked at the beautiful Atlantic, watching the sea gulls flying, listening to the sounds of the Ocean, and walking and playing in the wet sand.
I do not like the Beach in June, but I have never been sorry I decided to make that trip.
At this writing, the two girls and one boy have graduated college, all with honors I am sure. They made top grades in high school.
Time and money are not wasted when those in need have a desire to take provided opportunity and apply themselves to the use of it. The Wie Family did just that.
May God shine a light on those around us, who will use opportunity provided to them. I know there are many who would, only we need to “see” them, they are fertile ground.
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