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Thursday, January 21, 2010

When a Commode Becomes a Temple

Philip Yancey gave me chills in his book, REACHING FOR THE INVISIBLE GOD. He told of a Cambodian man testifying at an international conference on evangelism. The man had been placed in a concentration camp by the Pol Pot regime.

When asked what he resented most about the camp, he replied, “Even more than deprivation of food, even more than the torture, I resented having no time to meet with God. There were guards yelling at us, forcing us to work, work, work.” Yet, this prisoner was convinced his death was imminent. Thus, he desired to spend time each day with God in preparation, but it was to no avail.

Then, he observed that the camp’s guards could get no one to volunteer to clean the cesspits. Who wanted to root himself in the raw sewage? So, the man volunteered for the horrible job.

At the conference, he enthralled his audience with these words, “No one ever interrupted me and I could do my work at a leisurely pace. Even in those stinking depths, I could look up and see blue sky. I could praise God that I survived another day. I could commune with God undisturbed and pray for my friends and relatives all around me. That became for me a glorious time of meeting with God.”

Here was a man who desired to commune with God so much, a de facto gigantic commode became for him, a temple.

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