By Ed Lyons
Editions of Africa Messenger typically report on the situation in Sudan and on the various ministry activities in which PPF is engaged. But the really beautiful thing about the ministry work is not always the work itself, but how it came to pass.
PPF is 100 percent supported by the prayers and giving of individuals, churches, businesses, clubs, foundations, and other non-profits. Therefore, behind every story of a Sudanese refugee receiving a cup of cold, clean water from a PPF well, is a story of compassion and sacrifice from a Christian far away who decided to get involved.
I am reminded about this every week, as I receive notes, pictures, and other testimonies of people actively engaged in compassion for the persecuted.
Recently, I received several pictures from a lady named Marilyn. Marilyn lives in Massachusetts and has a heart for the persecuted. She decided to make the 100 Wells Campaign bracelets that PPF offers on its website(https://secure.giftwrapplus.org/ppf/EU/cart/default.aspx?) to help raise funds and awareness for the Darfur refugee community in Jaac.
In her own words, this is what Marilyn had to say:
“One of the most frustrating aspects of growing old is feeling useless – especially when you have always been really active and involved.”
“The Sunday that Ed Lyons spoke at our church, I was sitting up front in a special rocking chair reserved for me. As he talked about the Persecution Project and the bracelets he needed for the 100 Wells, my heart started pounding, and I got so excited. ‘This is something I can do!’ I raised my hand as soon as he finished and volunteered.”
“Everyone in the church said they wanted to help as well – and they have. We’ve held sessions at church, but at home I sit with my children and my grandchildren (from 8-80 years old), making the bracelets.”
“I thank God for the opportunity to help others once again.”
Marilyn did not just start working by herself; she recruited several ladies at her church to help as well. This is just one small but significant way concerned Christians can get involved. I often tell stories like this to the Sudanese people we help, just to encourage them. When someone gives us a gift, often we don’t know the story behind it. When we hear the story, it can sometimes bless us more than the gift. That was certainly the case with Marilyn and her friends.