Sunday, October 2, 2011

The Blanket

We began at a Christian Cafe, a new Chaplain shared her recent experience of mission in Cambodia after which we prayed God would increase our faith and enable us to serve Him. We wanted God to act and help us see Him. As we said ‘Amen’ the Chaplain phone literally rang 35 seconds later. I realised as it rang that the ring tone was exactly the same as an old computer game I played years before (prior to being saved). In it a Special Forces soldier was given specific missions via mobile phone calls. When I heard the tone, my mind immediately recalled the game. However, now, years later, it was God doing the calling, and the mission and the ‘game’ ...was real.

The police officer asked for our assistance. A highly inebriated girl needed help. We were close to the area and thus stepped out of the Cafe with a sense of excitement and anticipation. Our minds were keeping up with God’s miraculous answer to prayer. When we arrived at the scene two officers, three young partiers and one very drugged girl greeted us. The girl would scream, often squirm around and then fall comatose into the arms of a friend. This cycle would repeat about every 20 seconds. We knelt down, placed hands on her and prayed internally for peace.

When you see prayer answered, your unspiritual mind (its flesh not spirit – thus its unspiritual) struggles to comprehend that yes your prayer is being answered it isn’t a coincidence she is more peaceful now. Prayer works. We stayed for about half an hour till the ambulance arrived. The girl had old razor cuts on her wrists. ‘Self harm’ is the psychological catch word for it. Often the story of Legion in Matthew chapter eight comes to mind. Here a man demon possessed was hitting himself with rocks – self harm. I prayed and rebuked what was troubling her, whilst the African Chaplain placed her hand on the girl’s back. We also discovered she had taken anti depressants and half a bottle of vodka . Self control gone; something else was taking over. God wanted Christians there. Only Christians were addressing the spiritual condition of the girl. The third Chaplain reassured the bystanders.

The ambulance finally arrived. An extremely handsome Ambulance Driver emerged. Six foot with chiselled good looks. I sensed God’s incredible wisdom. When the girl saw him she actually smiled at him and did her best to ‘straighten up’. You can choose to think everything happens as coincidence in life, or you can choose to think that God has it under control and is intimately involved. I generally go for the latter. It was time to leave, mission accomplished. We said our goodbyes to the police; even the Hollywood Ambulance officer recognised our efforts and the Police thanked us sincerely. We all left aglow. Expectantly we awaited the next call (from God).

Walking along one of the many streets of Northbridge we came across what appeared to be an orange tartan picnic blanket. It was Just lying in the middle of the footpath with no one around. We stopped and stared at it. I asked the girls Is God giving us this blanket for some poor soul later in the night? We decided He was and put it into the Chaplain back pack. It wasn’t even dirty! Ten minutes later we saw a homeless guy. Offering him the blanket he refused aggressively. Ok, the blanket wasn’t for him.

After more walking we sat to rest. I had to return to my car and as I did so I came across a girl lying in the gutter. Sadly that is what you see in Northbridge. Pretty girls (someone’s daughter) lay vomiting in gutters, skirts half way up their backsides and predators looking on lustfully.

A girl sat beside her. She was a worker from the nightclub. I told her we will be back with help.. Mission Two had arrived. Returning to the scene the nightclub worker handed the situation to us and quickly disappeared. We took out the blanket and put it under her head – thanking God the whole time. She could talk, barely. She kept trying to vomit. Drunk men kept coming up and ogling her. A pretty girl with long legs and a short skirt sprawled in the gutter attracts all the wrong types. The men’s concern is far from sincere. Sometimes it’s actually sickening. As we patted her hair and reassured her, I felt a quiet voice say put the blanket over her body. I had not even thought of it till God prompted the idea.

Doing so she disappeared under a nondescript picnic blanket. It was perfect. The female Chaplain placed a scarf beneath her head and prayed she would rest. If we ceased praying she went back into convulsions. You could literally see the prayer being answered. The police arrived and called her parents on the mobile. They were on the way. The Officer was extremely helpful and supportive and allowed us to handle the situation whilst his presence kept the men away. Again thank you Lord. At one point an annoying drunken lad kept tapping me on the shoulder and telling me what to do (and thus continually disrupted my prayers). I eventually turned to him and said see that Police Officer over there, well if you don’t leave I’m going to have him lock you up. He left – thankfully. Amazingly three minutes later he came back and apologised!

God was astounding me to be honest. His direction, support, authority all were flowing very powerfully.
I leant over and told the girl your parents are coming to pick you up, thinking to reassure her. She started screaming. Loudly SCREAMING. The police even moved away. We tried telling her the police had rung them but it didn’t help. She continued to scream hysterically. I had to do something. Using a similar technique I learnt three minute prior I whispered if you don’t settle down the Police are going to lock you up for the night. She fell silent immediately! Breathing a sigh of relief as my heart raced thanking God. By now we were really hoping the parents would arrive. The other Chaplain was searching the nightclub for supposed friend of the girl. All of this, by the way, was occurring beside two hundred drunken onlookers outside of the area’s busiest nightclub. The words Street Chaplain are on your back and you are Christ’s ambassador. Your REALLY don’t want to blow it at these times!

The parents arrived. We ushered them over reassuring them their daughter was ok. After bundling her into the car, the mother went in to the nightclub with one of the Chaplains. On return she told us – we are Christians, we are not used to all this. I think all three Chaplains were floored at this point. The girl was a Christian; she had snuck out without  telling her parents (the screaming made sense now). They actually thought she was still asleep in bed when the police called! We all could see God’s amazing protection and concern for his children. As they left they offered to return the blanket, we said it’s ok keep it. We didn’t bother telling them God gave us it. Some things are best left unsaid.