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Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Alex and Irene, and the story of Job


I have read the story of Job many times.  It is a story that makes me pray that God will not see fit to test my faith in such a way.  For many years, and even until recently, I would read that story, and the part that always stood out was that of how Job lost all of his children, and in the end God gives him more.  In my mind I would always say, "but that doesn't replace the ones he lost". Then it occurred to me, that God always has a far better thing than what I can wrap my heart and my head around.  He wasn't replacing those children, He was increasing Job's number of children.....his first children who died still live....they are in heaven. Now Job will have a double portion of his precious children for all eternity in heaven with him. Yes, I know it is so hard from an earthly perspective to think that way. We miss those children.  We want to be with them, to hold them, to love them, to talk to them.  But what is time on earth compared to eternity?  This made me think of Alex and Irene and all that has happened to them in recent months.  They got married just a few short years ago.  He got a job going to Iraq. A dangerous job, not a well paying job, but a job and in Uganda those are very difficult to come by.  His job led him to Iraq for a year. He left and Irene was pregnant.  She gave birth to a beautiful baby girl whom they named Omega.  Omega had a heart condition and Irene and Alex desperately sought help for her.  There was none.  Omega died at 3 months of age, before Alex could make it home to see his baby girl for the first and only time.  As they mourned the loss of Omega, Alex was due to leave again, this time to Afghanistan.  Issue and issue came up that prevented him from leaving. One of those issues was severe kidney stones that led to him being hospitalized.  We think to ourselves....how many problems can one young couple endure?  We pray to God for Alex and Irene.  We are all trying to make sense of the endless struggles of this precious young couple who desire above all things to honor and serve God, even in the midst of pain and suffering, of struggle and uncertainty.
Then, amazingly......God doesn't replace Omega, He has her with Him waiting for the day she will be reunited with her parents.....and increases Alex and Irene's family by giving them a baby girl who had been born around the time of the death of Omega. A little girl whose mother died shortly after her birth, whose father loves her but cannot care for her.  A little girl with some health problems due to malnutrition, but a beautiful little girl.  Job came to mind again.....all he lost, God gave back......Alex and Irene.....God is doing much the same thing. I praise God for His awesome and unfathomable ways....I am thankful that He has a plan and a purpose for his children....plans not to harm them, but to help them....plans to give hope and a future.
Please pray for Alex and Irene as they minister to the needs of this beautiful new daughter of theirs...Natasha. (Please pray for Alex and Irene......they so covet your prayers as they seek God's will in their new family, in Alex's work, and as Irene seeks to return to law school. Mercy Uganda is seeking sponsors for her education.....Uganda needs Christian attorneys....Irene is someone God has great plans for and will use mightily.  Alex is a mighty prayer warrior who puts his trust in God....they are true friends of Mercy Uganda, partners in prayer.....they are always here for us, we want to be here for them as well)
To see a video of Alex and Irene with baby Natasha, go to www.youtube.com and type in A New Baby Girl

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