Yesterday I attended the ordination of the Chaplain I mentioned in a previous post. I drove across Pittsburgh through a rain storm and went about ten miles beyond my right turn because the road sign was not visible. But I made it to the church in time to get seated and I watched the proceedings begin in the chapel. The church was comprised mostly of African Americans, and the Chaplain from Nigeria and his family.
This dear brother in Christ was dressed in a suit, and his wife and children had also dressed in their finest to help their Daddy celebrate his special day. The service touched my heart, because this man and his wife worked so hard to obtain his degree with four children to raise. He humbly thanked God in his Nigerian accent, and gave honor to Him for the victory. He then told of the day almost two decades earlier when he had just finished drying off his legs having washed them for prayers. He was faithful to his Muslim upbringing and faithful to observe the times of prayer. That particular day, as he was drying off his legs, he had a clear vision of being in a suit, and he was preaching Christianity. He did not understand the vision then, and thought it would not be wise to share that vision with his Muslim family. He really had forgotten about the vision because it didn't make any sense. He had not planned to become a Christian.
As he stood in front of the church in his suit telling about that vision, he said, "this is the day the vision is fulfilled." He spoke from his heart about his love for Jesus, and his desire to reach Africa for the glory of God. He told of the financial hardships of attending school in Texas with a growing family, and the number of times it seemed impossible to ever achieve his goal of becoming an ordained minister. But the Lord of hosts was with him, and now that he is an ordained minister he plans to use his training to preach the Gospel. I don't think I will ever forget the times we have had praying together over his mission while Qavah listened in from her bed in the hospital room. He and his wife are planning to go back to Africa and accomplish the tasks the Lord brings before them.
Before I left the chapel on Sunday, the elders and Pastor held my hands and prayed about Qavah. Their prayers for her were so humbling, and mighty. I felt my heart strengthened after such a hard week of observing her misery. Before we leave Pittsburgh, Lord willing, we will worship there at that little chapel again, and Qavah will meet those who prayed for her. My heritage is Jewish. My skin is white. Sunday was a picture of what heaven will look like as we gather around the throne together, every color, nation, tribe, and tongue. It is only in Christ that we will see that unity, and only through Christ that there will be peace among Muslims and Jews, and all ethnic groups. This past Sunday, Christ was the unifying theme of our lives and worship. Together we celebrated the life of a humble man from Nigeria with a dream, who loves the Lord with all his heart. My days here is Pittsburgh have enriched my life, and I will never be the same.