Sunday, January 27, 2008

Kissed by the Devil

Well, it was not as extreme as that title sounds, but I knew it would get your attention :)

The pilot, Gary, and his family decided to move from Cameroon, out here to Tchad and settle in our little village of Bere for a while. Some of us went to meet the plane as Gary brought part of their things to move in. Soon the plane had landed and we started helping him unload into the hospital truck. The crowd of kids and curious onlookers grew to a sea of black faces. As a couple men acted as guards with sticks to keep people away from the plane, Sonya and I had fun pretending to walk through the Red Sea (actually brown sea). We'd walk straight through the crowd that would part perfectly on both sides with everyone staring & avoiding touching us.

As we finished covering the plane, though, we noticed that we were no longer the main entertainment. A little ways away, the crowd had gathered around a woman who seemed to be acting quite strangely. Whatever she was doing was making everyone erupt into laughter, and though I was curious, we continued with the truck over to the house that Gary was moving into.

We carried boxes and bags full of rice and other essentials back and forth from the truck to the house. While waiting for Gary to finish checking everything out, Sonya, James, and I hung around outside. The crowd had continued on over to us and soon the lady that had entertained everyone at the plane, was again center of attention right in front of us. She was gesturing wildly while yelling out a constant stream of words, apparently funny, to the crowd. Soon she was throwing herself all over the place, on the ground, running at people and then very rudely dancing at the delight of everyone.

I watched her strange jerky movements, confused, until James mentioned that she was acting like the demon-possessed patients he's had come to the hospital. I disgustedly looked away as she singled out Tony, the guard, and half pulled her shirt off while dancing practically on top of the poor guy cornered against a wall. But then, almost returning to normal, she walked over to us and stuck her hand out to James. He took it and she shook hands with him quite vigorously. When she then stepped in front of me, I figured there was no harm in greeting her like James had.

As I grabbed hold of her outstretched hand, suddenly I felt myself being jerked towards her. With surprising strength, and quicker than a blink, she had grabbed the back of my head with her free hand and aimed for a straight-on kiss. Just in time, I moved my head enough to receive the loud smack on my cheek. She jerked my head around and tried again, but this time I got a hand up to block it and pushed her away with the help of James pulling her off. Bewildered and a bit shaken, I looked up to see the crowd laughing hysterically. So I shrugged my shoulders and smiled, figuring a little love never hurts anyone.

We tried to ignore the woman after that, as the crowd dispersed and she hung around the truck with us. As I rested my arms on the side of the truck and talked to Sonya, I noticed she was right across from me copying my movements. Only she moved at the exact same time as I did, staring straight at me.

As we finally left, I laughed with everyone else, although it was quite unnerving to me. These people are caught up in such a terrible, tangible battle between God and Satan. But, they don't see it when the master deceiver makes it funny to them, interesting to try, and pleasurable.


  1. Hi Sarah!

    It's been a long time since I've written, so will write a short note! I just caught up with some of your experiences by reading your blog! Thanks for sharing! Your experience with the possessed, very sobering. Carl & I are in New York City right now....he's been speaking at several high schools and then an event at a Catholic church this evening. We'll be flying back out west early tomorow morning! Talked to Shaun this morning. All is well at Sagunto! I'd like your mailing address....we'll send you a family picture & letter that we've been sending out! Take care, Teresa

  2. Wild stuff! You certainly seem to have a knack for participating in extreme situations in Africa. Thanks for sharing some of them on your blog. It's sad to see people laughing at seriously messed up/satanic behavior but I'm sure people notice the examples you guys at the hospital set. God is so much bigger than anything the devil can throw at you. Take care and enjoy the rest of your stay in Africa! And give Liz a big hug from me. Thanks again for the blogs! Kevin

  3. Hey Sarah! We're praying for you. Its cold and wet here so Caleb, Lisa and Becky all came over to my house and we're just chilling and reading your blog :)
    Miss you!