the Vernon Journal

Serving the Kingdom in Southeast Asia

Unnecessary Roughness

Four nights ago Lori had begun feeling sick so we were laying low for the evening. We had a wedding recently and a new family was moving into our village which meant building a new home, so there had been a lot of things going on. When big events like that are happening there are many more social gatherings, meals and tea. While we were lying low for the evening we suddenly heard a loud rumbling. Down the hill from us we heard dozens of voices screaming in what was obviously quite an argument.

Minutes later a young man came running up to our home saying "Get your truck ready, you have to go to the emergency clinic". I ran inside to get my keys and came out to see four men carrying another man who was drifting between crying and unconsciousness with blood all over his head.

We loaded him into our truck and I left with he and his two brothers. I had no idea where I was going, it had just gotten dark and was pouring rain. As we drove we had to scream at the man with the head wound to keep him awake. About 15 minutes heading out of town we came to a clinic and brought him in. Once he was in the emergency techs hands I tried to find out what had happened. All I could figure out was that he had been hit with something harder than a stick but less than a machete.

Lori had an entire other set of worries. She went from a restful evening to having her husband drive off with a bloody man going who knows where or when he would return and everyone coming to her home to decompress. She learned that somehow the fight had begun when a child who had been acting up all day threw a piece of fruit. Somehow from that there erupted a fight and the injury we had seen. Her reaction was to go to our pastor and to say (in her broken Akha) "Tell them NOT to HIT".

The injury was stitched up, morphine was given for his pain and other medicine as well as instruction to care for the concussion. We returned and went to the home to pray for the peace of the family who was there and the incident faded away.

It's apparently not uncommon. So many people with so many wounds and no way to release them. There is so much council needed and healing in order to begin a change from hatred and fear to love. It was a real shock for us, and we covet your prayers as we continue deeper and deeper into the Akha culture and the lives of the men and women God has brought us to.

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