Tag Archive | Disposable people

The Kidnapper

Under cover of darkness the evil one comes.  Doing the work of his evil father, he is:    The Kidnapper.

 

 

Manual and Rosita Rodriguez had saved enough money to come to the resort on a family vacation. They were so excited to be there at last.

 

Manny, that’s what Rosita called her husband, worked with the street department in Anaconda, California.  He had come with his family from Mexico when he was just five years old.  Manny’s father worked hard to provide for his family and when he became an American citizen he was committed to raise his children to be good citizens, and they were.

 

The Rodriguez family had been raised in the Catholic tradition but through the kindness, love and compassion of their neighbor, they came to know Jesus personally and began attending the local Pentecostal church she attended, though neither of them took religion or God too seriously.  They thought that going to church on Sunday was good enough, the rest of the week they pretty much did what they wanted to.

 

When Manny was twenty five years old he met Rosita. He went to a Fiesta with a friend and there she was.  She was small with a slight build, her hair fell in waves over her shoulders and her dark eyes were rimmed with long lashes.  She captured Manny’s heart.  It was love at first sight for Manny.  It took some doing to win Rosita’s heart, but eventually he did.  They had been married now for ten years and had three children.

 

The oldest child, a girl they named Manuela, after her father, was nine. Their second child was a boy named Jorge, he was seven.  The baby, Carmelita, was just three months old.

 

Life had its ups and downs for the Rodriguez family as it does for all of us.

 

Manny had worked as a grounds keeper for a wealthy family.  It was a good job and he was able to provide nicely for his family.  But the security that they had hoped for was not to be.

 

A property developer wanted the property to build a multi story apartment complex with shops on the lower level, as the area was expanding and he could see dollar signs in the future.  The family was more than ready to let go of it because they were past retirement age and ready to move into something smaller.

 

After a six month struggle without work, Manny got a job with the Anaconda street maintenance department. Life went well in the ensuing years.  They were able to save a little and had plans to buy a house the following year.

 

God had a plan for this family, it was a good plan, but the events that took place certainly didn’t make it look that way.  Sometimes the plans He has for us look like defeat, but from His view He sees great victory.  That is how He saw His son’s death and resurrection.

 

Arvad Cheminsky was a bell boy at the resort, though he was no longer a boy.  He was born and raised in Moldova to a poor family, but he had grand dreams, dreams of lots of money  He hated being poor and vowed the day would come when he would never be poor again.  When he was sixteen he left home and went to Russia.

 

Times were tough and he found whatever work he could, sweeping floors, loading trucks and loading cargo on the docks.  It was on the docks that he met Boraas Plenovich.  Like himself Boraas was young and ambitious. They became friends.  In time Boraas told Arvad that there was a lot of money to be made if he was interested. Boraas said he had connections.

 

Arvad was fond of a certain bar that was operated by a young couple.  The wife was a sturdy, well built girl and the husband was a nice-looking man with a big mustache and a deep voice.  They became friends.  Boraas came with Arvad a few times and saw a money making scheme that would pay big.  He suggested to Arvad that he ask the husband if his wife could accompany him to Thailand where they would meet up with a man who could provide an opening for a bar in the city of Pattaya, Thailand.  He assured him that it was quite lucrative and would be a great investment.  The husband gave his permission.

 

He never saw his wife again.  He searched for years trying to find her or Arvad to no avail.  After many years and lots of money and heartache, he learned that Arvad had sold her to human traffickers in Thailand.

 

Arvad and Boraas worked with the Russian mafia. Though they never met anyone higher than their local contact, they didn’t care, they didn’t want to know, as long as they got paid, and they got paid well for a good specimen.  They made a lot of money and all they had to do was deliver the goods to their contact.  It was a nice clean operation.  They had what they wanted.  There was no shortage of drink and women as long as the money flowed.

 

When the Rodriguez family checked in at the front desk, Arvad was there.  He took their bags up to their rooms paying special attention to their conversation and observing the children carefully.

 

The two older children were slight in build like their mother.  The contact wanted specimens that would last awhile, so Arvad always looked for ones that were more sturdy.  In this case the baby was promising, besides the contact said that her contact wanted something different and this baby might just be the thing that would bring a higher price.  He dallied, moving a chair here and some flowers over there, as the family excitedly examined their quarters.

 

The older children were excited to get into their swim suits and go to the pool. The woman wanted to get her baby to bed as she was fussy and tired.  Arvad watched where she took the child and after receiving his tip he left.  All he had to do now was watch for an opportunity.

 

His next assignment was the pool area. Fortunately for him, the Rodriguez family was at the pool.  Manuela and Jorge were playing and splashing in the pool while Rosita held Carmelita and Manny took pictures.

 

Bringing a pitcher of lemonade over to their table he heard Manny suggest to Rosita that they put the children to bed after supper and when they were asleep they could go for a stroll in the gardens.  It sounded so romantic and it had been a long time since they had time alone together, and in such a beautiful setting.  Though she had some hesitation about leaving the children alone, Rosita consented.

 

They walked in the flower lined garden, stopped to admire a beautiful orchid growing on a tree, and sat down on a bench.  The night air was beginning to cool off from the heat of the day. The sky turned a beautiful orange, then pink leading into shades of night gray.  They reluctantly returned to their rooms as the sun was beginning to set.

 

Rosita went into the room where Manuela and Jorge were sleeping.  She paused a moment to reflect on what a wonderful day it had been.  Going into their room to the crib where she had laid Carmelita, she was horrified to find that she was not there.  She screamed. Manny came running into the room to see what had happened.  Their baby was gone.

 

Arvad saw that the Rodriguez’s had gone out of the room.  What wonderful timing!  He alerted his contact to be ready as he would hand off the baby to her.  She posted a watch on the Rodriguez’s to make sure they were not surprised before they snatched the child.

 

Carefully letting himself into the room with the master key that he had stolen, he went to the room where the baby was. Picking her up he placed a rag soaked in a drug solution over her nose and mouth to keep her sedated so she wouldn’t cry.

 

Opening the door to the adjoining room where his contact waited, he gave her the baby, she would take it to the next contact.  Arvad would get paid handsomely for this one, he was sure of that.  She was plump with rosy cheeks, someone would pay big for her.

 

Every step along the way was carefully planned.  There were no clues left behind, no trace of anything for the police to go by.  The kidnapping made the papers and the news media was all over the resort. Arvad hung around long enough to not arouse suspicion when he left.  He went back to Russia with a lot of money in his pocket.

 

Devastation is the best word to describe the Rodriguez family. Manny blamed himself, Rosita blamed Manny and herself.  The children were inconsolable.  The request for prayer went throughout the world. The only hope was a miracle.  Manny and Rosita turned to God with all of their hearts, begging for the return of their daughter.

 

Pattaya, Thailand, a man walked into a cleaning establishment.  He asked about their laundry and cleaning facility and mentioned that he had some needs and wondered if they knew where these needs could be met.  Eyeing him carefully, the owner asked if he had any preference for his needs to be met and when he said that he didn’t the owner lead him into a back room.

 

“I have something very special for you.”  He said.  “I am sure your needs will be taken care of.”  They agreed on a price; it was paid and the shopkeeper opened the door to a dimly lit room.  Entering the room the man saw a baby.  His stomach turned.  He thanked the shopkeeper and closed the door.

 

When he was brought into the back room, he noticed a door with an exit sign. Scooping up the baby in his arms, he carefully opened the door a crack to make sure no one was outside.  The coast was clear, running as fast as he could out the door and down the street, he came to the place where his friend was waiting for him.

 

The newspapers and TV carried a picture of three month old Carmelita Rodriguez as she was returned to her family with the caption:  “God does a Miracle, baby returned to her parents!”

 

 

When I was in Chicago a few years ago, I was at the Union train station waiting for my train to come.  I was totally unaware that bus stations and train stations are used by pimps and prostitutes to get easy money.  They prey upon unsuspecting, gullible people.  No doubt they saw me as their “pigeon”.  I have learned since then that these places are favorites for pimps to pick up girls fresh from the country who appear lost or lonely.

 

I had purchased some lunch and was sitting in a designated eating area.  A girl, solidly built, loud and coarse, sat down at a table next to  me.  She began to speak into her phone to her father.  She was telling him that she wanted to come home but that a guy was watching her and she was scared.  She asked him to wire her some money she could catch a bus home.  I felt so sorry for her.  I walked past her and put $20.00 into her hand.  She immediately got up and took off, very quickly followed by a black man.

 

I had been had!

 

I wrote this story today to make people aware of what is going on in the seamy world of human trafficking.  I don’t know a lot about it, but I do know some.  The story about the baby and the bar owner are true stories that I embellished with my imagination.

 

Parents and caregivers to pray for protection for the children in your care.  Educate yourself in the ways of those who deal in human souls for profit.

 

My sister left her two little girls by a jewelry counter in Walmart several years ago.  She told them to stay there, that she would be right back.  A man approached them, getting close he punched the older one in the stomach so she couldn’t cry out.  He began to take them toward the door as my sister came around the corner and saw him.  She yelled so loudly he got scared, dropped the girls and ran from the building.  Many years earlier I had a vision in which I saw that attempt and prayed for them.  God was merciful.  We cannot be too careful.  There are predators who think nothing of taking your precious treasures.   Be alert and aware.

 

It is written:

 

“Whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea.”  Matthew 18:6

 

“It is not the will of your Father which is in Heaven that one of these little ones should perish.

Matthew 18:14

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lady’s Song

She called herself Lady. I don’t know why. When I first noticed her she was standing at the counter. I was assigned the task of being a greeter that day and I welcomed her. My thought was that she looked pretty tough. I wondered about her story. Everyone has a story, you know. I was drawn to her, sensing that there was more to her than what the natural eye could see.

Today I met her again and this time I heard the story. She is an artist, a singer, song-writer and writer as well as a photographer by trade. But, she carries a calling and a burden for people of the street. Disposable people, throw away people is what most folks think they are. The misfits, the con-artists, those who are strung out on drugs or alcohol, people that “decent” people don’t want to think about, much less have anything to do with. Yet, here is a woman with a heart as big as all outdoors, who is literally doing everything that she can to help them along the path to wholeness.

Lady shared a story with me about a woman who was determined to do what she could about human trafficking. She had made contact with thirty churches and every one refused to help her. Somehow she got connected to Lady and was helped.

I heard a story long ago of a woman who came on hard times, she just needed a hand up, kind of to get past a rough spot in the road. She went to the church that her parents had attended. They had financed some major projects for the church, she was sure they would help her. They turned her down, saying that they could not help her or they would have to help everyone that came with their hand out. Needless to say, she wanted nothing to do with Christianity, if that was how it worked.

A short time ago I had a conversation with my eldest son, this happens infrequently so it was a pleasure that I cherish. We began talking about his business, some politics and ended up on spiritual matters. We came to agreement that in every area of our lives we must have balance, vision and passion. If you are not zealous for something you will do nothing. There is a saying, “If you don’t stand for something you will fall for anything.” Truth!

Lady has a vision to help the lost souls on the street, but in the process she is allowing God to break her heart for what breaks His. This process is painful but necesssary, if you wish to be mightily used by God. Lady has received help from many in the church that I attend, even though she does not attend. I love the part of the Body of Messiah that I have been called to be a part of, I am so thankful to the Lord for allowing me to be here in this place, at this time!

Preparation is taking place everywhere. The Holy Spirit of God is making ready the Body of Messiah. Harvestime is upon us, a major, huge harvest will enter into the Kingdom of God soon, but not without a great shaking first. Now is the time to make sure you are in right standing with the Lord God, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.

Today is the day of salvation. If you have not received God’s gift of the Savior, Jesus, why don’t you do so now. First you must realize that “all have sinned” there is not one human being that is not a sinner, not inherently good. Confess the fact that you are a sinner and you need a savior, ask Jesus to be your Savior and Lord and you will be saved.

If you did that, welcome to the family of God! Begin to read the Bible, attend a Bible-believing church, talk to God, (we call it prayer) and get with people of like faith. The Spirit of God will help you grow up. You do not need to ever have a boring day again. Relationship with God does not have to be boring, it depends upon you. God loves adventures. Why don’t you start yours today?

Have a Blessed Day!

Joy

Jonah’s Story

Jonah felt like he was out-of-place from the beginning of his memory, the black sheep of the family. He grew up in a family of three boys; he was in the middle.  As sometimes happens, his older brother was a diligent hard-working leader type and baby brother was a comedian who kept everyone entertained with his jokes and keen wit.  Jonah was just in the middle with no particular skills, wit or drive to make him a stand-out, he was just Jonah, or so he thought.

Life has a way of going on and on, even when you want to say, “Stop the world, I want to get off.”  Jonah often felt like that recently, in fact he used alcohol to get some relief from the sense of worthlessness that he felt, even if it was only temporary relief.

I have seen low self-esteem, pride and rebellion reflected in many lives.  This seems to be more often the case in men than in women, and usually is because a person feels that they don’t fit in, or they feel worthless, or they feel that they are different.  I believe, this is the case with Jonah.

From the first days of his life Jonah was sweet-tempered with an easy smile.  He loved hugs and gave them freely.   He loved to play outside with his older brother and the neighbor boys.

He found his world an interesting place as a little boy, a bug or some other thing would  fascinate him; he would run in the house to his mother and ask her to, “Come and see what I found.”

When Jonah was five years old he prayed with his mother, asking Jesus to come into his heart.  The next day he told her that Jesus said that he would be a pastor when he grew up.  He denied this in later years, even telling his mother it was her idea.

As he grew, his interest in the world around him, and especially other people, also grew.  At school he had a hard time focusing on doing school work because of this.  He often day-dreamed and did not respond to any correction the teachers tried.  He often asked his mother if they could pray for children in his class or their parents.  God would answer those prayers.

School work was easy for Jonah, but he was not interested in school, most of the time he would follow his flights of fancy, neglecting his homework.  He still got decent grades, without really trying, yet he had the ability to be a straight A student.

When he graduated from high school, his parents wanted him to go to college, but he did not want to, choosing instead to get a job.  This lasted for about a year and at that point he decided he wanted to have a profession, so he applied to a tech school to learn carpentry.

It was at the school that he met his future wife.  She was learning to be an ultra-sound technician.  Her background was dissimilar in many ways to his, but as often happens, “opposites attract”.  The relationship was rocky from the start, but they seemed to be drawn together and it was not long before they were “in love” and wanting to be married.  She became pregnant shortly after that decision.

Mary got her degree from the tech school, but with a wife and a child on the way, Jonah could not continue.  He had to find a job.

At that time, finding a job was a challenge for someone without a college degree, and the only thing available was manual labor.  Another challenge for Jonah was finding a job in the small town they lived in.

Up to this time, Jonah did not give God much thought, but when times get hard and your back is up against the wall, you have little else to turn to and alcohol was only a temporary fix.

Jonah prayed and God provided a job.

The baby was born in the heat of summer.  He was a beautiful boy, so sweet.  He looked a lot like his mother, but with his dad’s disposition.  they named him Jesse.

For a time all seemed to go well, but time marches on and stuff happens.  There were four more children born, a different house purchased to accommodate the growing family.  The company Jonah was working for went out of business and a new job was begun.

At this point in Jonah’s life, he was addicted to cigarettes and alcohol to an increasing degree.  His marriage was shaky and he began to have health problems.  Jonah believed the lie that he was somehow less-than and in his pride, he would not admit that he was wrong and that he had made some bad life choices.

Some people have to hit rock bottom before they realize that the life they have chosen has left them bankrupt and they have no one to blame but themselves.  The Lord God, designed us for a relationship with Himself,  and He said:  “Thou shalt have no other gods before me.”, yet we serve many gods, not the least of which is our own self.

I wish I could tell you the end of Jonah’s story, but the jury is out.  The day will come when Jonah must make a decision, we all get there.  Jonah is called by God to be an under-shepherd, a high and precious calling, one which many have answered and been blessed.  Jonah has run from the call as hard and fast as he could.  Sinning and loving the sin he is in.  Yet miserable in the middle of it all, because God never takes back the call.

People often think that they have time to choose to live for God, but sometimes time runs out before they can make that choice.  Others just don’t make a decision and no decision is a decision…it is, No!

Joshua told Israel as they were preparing to enter into the land that God had promised Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, “Choose this day whom you will serve, as for me and my house we will serve the Lord.”  It is a choice.

What about you friend, are you prepared to enter into eternity?  That is the promised land for every person who has chosen to receive Jesus as the promised Messiah, the lamb of God.  His blood, through His blood, is the only entrance into Heaven, and mental assent will not get you there…you must be born-again, born of the Spirit of God as Jesus said.

I write because I care, because I trust that someone needs to hear, to read, to see, and maybe that someone will turn around and leave their sinful life behind and run to the Lord, maybe that someone is you?

Prayerfully,

Joy

Recycled, Disposed and Made New

Have you ever had one of those days when you did not expect to happen what happened?  The experience I had today was one of those things.

I am feeling emotional because My husband and I just returned from the recycling center where we dropped off three items that no longer worked and have since been replaced.

microwave imageOne of the items that we brought to the recycling center was my old Sharp microwave.  My husband purchased it for me in 1982  even though I didn’t think I needed it, I felt the same way about getting a dishwasher in 1981, but both items made life much easier for me.  We owned the Sharp microwave for over thirty years and only replaced the fuse a couple of times.

printer

The next item that we brought to be recycled was the printer that I purchased when I bought my personal computer in 2002.  It was a Hewlett-Packard Photosmart printer and I used it every single day for all of those ten years.  It printed pictures, copies of whatever I wanted it to, and scanned numerous items.  If it was a person I would have said, “Well done, you have have been a good and faithful servant.”

DVD  VCR

The third, and last item that we brought was a DVD/VCR that we had for around fifteen years.

We pulled up to a small building in which sat a woman whose responsibility was to check what you were bringing in.  My husband rehearsed the list to her.  She repeated it back and told him that because the microwave is considered an appliance there would be a $15.00 disposal fee, but the other items were free.

He went through the rigmarole of showing his driver’s license, (why I don’t know) receiving the credit card machine into our vehicle, swiping the card and signing it.  He  returned it to the woman and was told that he should proceed to door 3 and the attendants would direct him what to do.

We drove up to the door, which opened by itself, and inside were two attendants.  I wondered if this job was monotonous as well as depressing, being a graveyard for used things as it was, and with that thought came a bunch of emotion to the surface and tears to my eyes.  The woman in the little house looked like she had been crying, the men looked sad.  Jesus, help them!

The door to the truck opened in the back and I heard a loud BANG, as first one thing was thrown into a bin, and then another bang, as the other thing was thrown in.  At this point I had tears in my eyes as I thought of how faithful these “things” had been to fulfill the purpose for which they were created.  They all gave long and faithful service.

Then, I saw the younger of the two attendants take the microwave to a very large walk in bin and steeled myself for the inevitable bang.  It came, a hard bang and it was done…over.  I looked around at mattresses stacked up against a wall and bin after bin of  “stuff”  no longer useful.  I was choked up…once useful things now throw away, or at best crushed and reused for some other purpose.

As we drove away from the facility, I told my husband, “Those things served us well.”  He has a wonderful recall memory and began to tell me how old each thing was.  We marveled at the length of time for each item.  What a blessing!

How many people after useful service are relegated to a nursing home or some other facility where their family hardly ever visits them…seemingly not caring or remembering the hours, days, months and years of productive service to them and the community that they were apart of.  Throw away people.  Have you considered this?  Maybe you are almost there or will be in a few years?

I think that the issue is respect and thanksgiving.  I know that things wear out and must be disposed of, and no doubt someone will call my ramblings silly, but to me, all of this is really about what God has done for us and our response to it.

We each come into the world with great promise, just as every new appliance or piece of electronic equipment comes on the market with promises to make life easier or better in some way.  Yet, for all of the “lemons” and all that is defective, whether people or things, the hope of the creator is that they/it will be a blessing to those whose lives they impact.

God created each of us…according to the Bible.  He is not only the creator, but He is also the manufacturer and not only that, He has given us the handbook that goes with His creation….The Bible.  Most of us don’t even bother to read the manufacturers hand book, we think we know better.  Parents don’t bother to read it.  If they did they might find out how God wants them to help their children to become useful and productive members of society, alas, we think we know better and we do it our own way…then the kids become teens and we wonder where we went wrong.

I determined not to be satisfied with the status quo,  I want to be open to new things, new ideas, all the while retaining God’s tried and true ways and His direction in the way that we should go.

My husband recently stopped smoking and he began to save the money he spent on cigarettes and with part of it he bought me the IPad that I had been desiring.  Blew me away, to say the least!  I am sooooo thankful!  What a blessing, how thoughtful and generous, how kind this wonderful person is that chose me to be his wife.

Most recently, we have thought about moving as we live on the second level and hauling groceries up the stairs has been quite a chore.  We began the process of looking into renting or purchasing, and with the help of a few people we were moving forward.  Yet each of us, independently of the other, was feeling hesitation and lacking the peace needed to proceed.

Yesterday, we brought the issue to the table and began a discussion that culminated with a decision to call off the search for a new home.  My husband felt that he was hearing that we should stay another year where we are.  This does not make sense in the natural as the interest rates are phenomenal right now and we could probably get a nicer place for less money than we are paying here.  However, we have learned that God is in charge and we are to follow the leading of His Spirit because He knows the end from the beginning.

So, to wrap this up, God will take care of us, He will bless us and the “things” that He provides…our job is to listen and obey His direction.  And, when the time comes when these bodies of ours are no longer useful in earth time, we will leave them here to be discarded and He will bring us home where all things are made new.

I hope you know that you are loved by God and that He has a great plan for your life.  If  you will listen and follow His direction obediently, you will be blessed.

Praise the Lord from whom all blessings flow!

Joyfully His, Joy