Wednesday, December 19, 2012

More Pics Of Andy In Iraq

Since this blog will end up being my memory book, I wanted these pictures to make it. They are from Andy's trip to Iraq.
This is another picture of Andy being interviewed on Iraqi TV.  Andy had some great conversations with the reporter and I think she is going to send her kids to Kivu this summer!
Andy and Andrew taking notes (maybe?) during one of the general assembly sessions.
These are the guys Andy traveled with.  The man standing by Andy is Carl.  Carl was the moderator for one of the sessions and he wrote this on his blog afterwards.  Well I managed to make some secular left-wing Europeans angry as $@&# today. Haven't seen someone that mad at me in a long time! All I did was talk about God and the power of forgiveness found in Jesus. They were horrified that I'd bring "that stuff" into a political conference and use my "Chairman" position to do it. Guess who lined up to tell me thank you? Yep. All the Muslims. Strange world indeed.  That pretty much sums up so much of Andy's times in the Middle East over the past year.  I love it!
This was on Carl's blog yesterday.  He is the one who actually got asked to go to Iraq and he is the one who invited Andy to tag along.  Carl wrote a bit about his time at the conference: (just an excerpt from his blog)


It was a meeting full of Arab politicians, Palestinians, Western activists and an interesting mix of journalist, foreign Ambassadors and even heads of state.  And I was put in charge of leading and moderating two of the meetings.  Tell me God doesn’t have a keen sense of humor.  (During one of them, I even wore my slippers because my feet were hurting.)

The first night I closed with a little talk (5 minutes) on Prayer.  Simply that we needed to pray for the people of the region.  You would have thought I’d called for the end of the world or something based on some of the responses.  The Muslim Arabs were all elated and the majority of the Westerners were furious.  I mean, spit-coming-out-of-their-
mouth-angry!  One Western lady said, “I’m an atheist and I can’t believe you brought God into this conversation".  I couldn’t resist saying two things:  1. "I didn’t bring God into it - He’s already here."  2.  "If you’re an atheist, then I guess you don’t need to worry!"
The next day a similar thing happened when I closed by sharing my thoughts on Jesus’ Way - the way of forgiveness.  I spoke softly and sensitively, but very clearly about Jesus.  I was told that has never happened before at an Arab League meeting.  I asked “Why not?”  They weren’t sure...
One group of Europeans actually got up and walked out during my talk.  But three mothers from Gaza came up to me afterwards in tears - two had lost their children - killed by Israeli shelling.  They grabbed my hand and wouldn’t let go.  “Thank you, thank you, thank you", they repeated over and over.  “Finally, someone acknowledges there is a God.”  The ironies here are many and profound!
The rest of the conference was full of discussions with leaders about Jesus and why I did that and what it means.  Some incredible discussions.  Too many to tell... and they are continuing on!

1 comment:

Denise said...

AMAZING what God is doing in this world through Andy. It reminds me of Matt. 10 as he speaks to Governors and Kings" Praising God for you guys and your work!