Saturday, April 16, 2005

faith stories: elka of the wai wai -part 5

(Part 5 of Chapter 8: "Into the Pit of My Stomach" from the book Christ’s Witchdoctor by Homer Dowdy © 1963).

[Introduction] [part 1] [part 2] [part 3] [part 4]

part 5...

Not long after Malu’s drowing, Bahm and Ferochi left the land of the Wai Wai for a short rest. Before going, Ferochi taught the Sunday lesson. She said God had created all things. Elka was to think of this many times in the coming cycle of the moon.

In this and other lessons he had learned of the nature of God–of His holiness, justice, mercy, love. He heard the stories of Adam, Abraham, Moses, Samuel, David, Elijah, Isaiah. The Gospel accounts of Christ’s ministry, His life, death and resurrection, and the Acts of the Apostles–these, too, were materials for his thought.

In the continuing work of the translating God’s Paper, Elka still was the key informant. He continued to receive an insight into scriptural truths as his keen mind dug deeply into them. The first epistle of John was one of the books opened to him.

"...Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world. Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God: And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God...."

Thus began the fourth chapter. It was something to think about in this world of spirits.

"Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world."

Maybe this explained why God’s children did not fear the spirits of the forest.

"He that loveth not knoweth not God: for God is love. In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him."

They could learn something about love. Was there not a better love than that which the Wai Wai knew?

"Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwelleth in him, and he in God."

Hnnn. So that’s the way to become a child of God, a companion of Jesus.

"There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear....We love him, because he first loved us."

No fear. This seemed to fit his need, a need that Kworokyam with all his frightening power had never met. Maybe this gave meaning and hope to life. There was badness and fear, yes; but there was a release from this trap after all.

It was Elka’s decision to make. Which should it be?

Kworokyam, the world of spirits, mostly evilly disposed toward man, who, without appeasement, rained fear, hate, pain, and death?

Or Christ, who came so far to bring love, peace, and life?

Kworokyam, whose power for evil would someday be destroyed by Christ?

Or Christ, eternal God?

Elka began to speak to the people in his house about God.

"Hnnn. Maybe Jesus Christ is the one we should believe in," he said.

"Huh!" they said to one another. "Old Elka is just talking talk."

One Monday, with Ferochi’s lesson fresh in his mind, Elka went hunting with his brother Yakuta. The trail gave onto a big rock.

"Who made this?" Elka asked suddenly, his question catching Yakuta by surprise.

"Who made that rock?" repeated Yakuta. "Why, I don’t know who made it." He was more interested in bringing down a fat-bellied spider monkey than in discussing who made what.

"It was Jesus," Elka said, ignoring his brother’s lack of interest. He climbed the rock and sat down. "This is of God’s making."

"Is that so?" Yakuta grunted with a toss of his bronzed shoulders. Yakuta went on hunting while Elka sat and thought. Jesus, not Kworokyam, was the one he wanted to serve, Elka thought to himself. Maybe he should ask Jesus to come into the pit of his stomach right now. "But," came the challenge of doubt, "maybe I’m not a true one. If I do receive Jesus, I will receive Him forever."

No, he was not ready yet.

to conclusion - part 6 ...

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