Summary: Jesus bears our sorrows and covers our sin

New Years Sunday January 4, 2009

Christmas with the Messiah

Songs 23-26 Isaiah 53:3-6

Rachel’s email

Some of you may have heard that we are experiencing severe trials in our Haitian Village. A Mob of Dominicans went in Sunday night and ran families out of their homes, threatened their lives and destroyed small business. This was in reaction to the discovery of murdered Dominican in the sugar cane fields on the road to the village.

Many families have abandoned their homes in fear of the mob and have been scattered all over the place. Pastor Jonny (Dudu’s Father) house was broken into and all of his stuff was thrown outside and destroyed. Pastor Jonny is the man who is taking care of Rosairi and Jonathan while I am away. The whole family (including my kids) fled the village and all 11 of them are currently hiding out in my apartment in Montellano. There is a vendetta against him as he is a community leader, and this mob wants all the Haitians gone for good.

I am endlessly thankful to hear that the entire family, including my two, remain unharmed. The military went in to try and restore some normalcy, they arrested the ringleader of the mob, but ended up letting him go when a riot ensued. It is unsafe for Gringo’s or Haitians to travel to the village, and there are only a few families who remain in what was once a robust population of Haitians and Dominicans trying to work together and climb out of abject poverty.

Please pray for the Haitian community, as well as Jonny’s family, as well as my two kids at this time. Also I would covet your prayers as I try to decide how to respond.

I had thought of how hard it would be for Rachel to leave her two adopted children back in the D.R. while she returned to Canada. (The adopting process is not complete, so they cannot travel with her.) But I can’t imagine how she would feel knowing that they were in such grave danger.

We have friends in the village, and we don’t know how this attack has affected them. In particular, we have Charina who we support through Kids Alive. When I received the news, the only thing I could do is to pray and to place everything into God’s hands

I turned to this week’s scripture and saw it with new eyes:

Isaiah 53

1 Who has believed our message

and to whom has the arm of the LORD been revealed?

2 He grew up before him like a tender shoot,

and like a root out of dry ground.

He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him,

nothing in his appearance that we should desire him.

3 He was despised and rejected by others,

a man of suffering, and familiar with pain.

Like one from whom people hide their faces

he was despised, and we held him in low esteem.

4 Surely he took up our pain

and bore our suffering,

yet we considered him punished by God,

stricken by him, and afflicted.

5 But he was pierced for our transgressions,

he was crushed for our iniquities;

the punishment that brought us peace was on him,

and by his wounds we are healed.

6 We all, like sheep, have gone astray,

each of us has turned to our own way;

and the LORD has laid on him

the iniquity of us all.

7 He was oppressed and afflicted,

yet he did not open his mouth;

he was led like a lamb to the slaughter,

and as a sheep before its shearers is silent,

so he did not open his mouth.

8 By oppression and judgment he was taken away.

Yet who of his generation protested?

For he was cut off from the land of the living;

for the transgression of my people he was punished.

9 He was assigned a grave with the wicked,

and with the rich in his death,

though he had done no violence,

nor was any deceit in his mouth.

10 Yet it was the LORD’s will to crush him and cause him to suffer,

and though the LORD makes his life an offering for sin,

he will see his offspring and prolong his days,

and the will of the LORD will prosper in his hand.

11 After he has suffered,

he will see the light of life and be satisfied;

by his knowledge my righteous servant will justify many,

and he will bear their iniquities.

12 Therefore I will give him a portion among the great,

and he will divide the spoils with the strong,

because he poured out his life unto death,

and was numbered with the transgressors.

For he bore the sin of many,

and made intercession for the transgressors.

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