My friend here, the one who just had a miscarriage, is a special person. We have become close, much like sisters. She is without family nearby, and I have family, but am also seldom near them.
For the last six years, we have been sisters.
I met her one day when they lost a place to live, and they moved in with us. For about three months, we lived together, and even after they moved out, they were daily in our house from early morning until late night. My daughter loved her more than me as a small baby and would scream when she left. I was there for the birth of her last child. I love my new sister dearly.
We both moved across the world together and navigated our way around a new place together. We're friends.
The country which we work in had no songs. I guess there were a few, translated years ago with western tunes, but no real songs. Singing was not really done. We needed music. A church needs music. Believers need music. Music lifts, teaches worship, and is so dramatically different from the darkness around them.
My friend can sing. She is not the best, no. Would likely never be accepted for American Idol. But she can sing. More importantly, she knows how to worship God, and that worship has in the last few years begun to be expressed in song writing. She writes, and then with others, she teaches how to sing.
Before she began to write songs, she had a dream. She told me this dream hesitantly one day as we did housework together. She said:
I dreamed I was in a stadium sort of building, an arena with seats all around it. I knew I was standing where people were brought to be killed. I could see people coming to kill me, but I was not afraid. I stood there with my children with me, and I began to sing. When I opened my voice to sing, the singing filled the arena. It was almost like a powerful force, and it stopped the people coming, but then they became very angry and they began to run toward me to kill me. I sang louder, and we began to run. We ran and ran up the arena seats towards the door, and I saw my children go out the door to safety, but I was still singing as I ran. The men came chasing me, and I turned around and the words that I sang were so powerful. I can't tell you what they were, but the song was filling the arena. And then I woke.
I asked her if she got out alive, and she said she didn't know. She woke up. I asked if it was a frightening dream, and she said it really wasn't. It was more amazing when she saw the power of the singing, and the song itself filled her with courage and hope. That was four years ago, and she and I filed it away to think about. Yet, from that day, I knew God would use her in her country in a great way. The church needed songs. This last week, when she came back from traveling, exhausted, and she miscarried her baby; she had just come back from teaching a whole new set of songs - the second set now. People who had never heard singing now sing together to worship.
I know for me, worship in song has amazing power. It lifts me when I am down. It comforts me when I hurt. It allows me to express joy in God's presence. I could never do what my sister does, but I watch her work and am thrilled. I've prayed for God's hand on her in this area for four years - ever since her dream.