One of the first things I heard from Joe Bridges after landing in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia was that there was a pre-teen girl named Metu who was giving them great concern. She was absolutely homeless and was residing at Children’s Home Ethiopia, but she was openly challenging authority and calling the staff names in front of the other children. They didn’t know what to do other than send her away, but they hated the very thought of that. The Lord put her on my heart and I began praying for her every day.
I met her one day later on Saturday as we did a two-hour Vacation Bible School for the S.A.F.E Project kids and a few of the drop-in center kids, including Metu. She was all smiles and, like all the rest of the children, very glad to see us and eager to have their pictures taken. As we drove through the city later and Joe saw the children’s hospital, he remarked that this was the only place he knew in Addis that treated children with psychological disorders and he wondered if Metu needed some care there. She never showed any sad emotions, Joe noted, and he suspected that she might have been abused. He told us her real name was Wode.
Monday through Wednesday was our VBS for the drop-in kids. On Monday we talked about how God is our loving Creator and that as such He has given us the good gifts of our bodies and our souls. We should take care of these good gifts by washing our hands, brushing our teeth and taking preventive care against germs. On Tuesday we talked about how we had not taken very good care of our souls, that all had sinned and disobeyed God, even though He gave us the good gift of His rules for our own good. We walked through the Ten Commandments and talked about how all of us had disobeyed them. Wednesday we talked about how Jesus died to forgive our sins, that He was God’s good gift to rescue us from God’s own judgment. I encouraged the children afterwards that if they wanted to receive Jesus’ forgiveness and give Him their lives, they should talk to one of the counselors.
A little later Metu mentioned to our translator, Sami, that she wanted to ask Jesus to be her Savior. So Bisrat (one of the staff) and I took her aside and I asked her what made her want to do this. She said that as I had talked about Jesus’ forgiveness it had made her very happy. I made sure she understood what was involved in making Christ her Savior and gave her suggestions of how she should pray. She prayed. She seemed very happy. I asked Bisrat if he thought she was serious and he said, “Yes, she is very serious.” We left the next day but I got to see Metu one more time before we headed home. Thank you God for rescuing those who come to you for help and salvation. Thank you for saving Metu.