Wednesday, June 5, 2013

A Great Report from Hong Kong – Randall and Denise

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A Great Report from Hong Kong – Randall and Denise

The following report arrived to my computer via email. It is from my friends Randall and Denise in Hong Kong. They are doing similar things that I did when we lived there.  For that reason what is in this report deeply moved me… and brought many wonderful memories.

I trust as you read this you will also be stirred and think of the great need there is in Prison – in Hong Kong and around the world. Contact information for Randall and Denise is posted at the end of the article.

Randall and Denise wrote the following….

In Hong Kong we often see promotions on television explaining the dangers and problems of “taking drugs” and the damage to people.  We did not fully understand the destructive power of drug problems until Denise recently was involved in visiting some of the HK Prisons for Drug Rehabilitation.  With an increasing number of drug addicts and drug convictions in Hong Kong, Denise was invited to join a volunteers’ visit to two of the Prison Rehabilitation Centres.  Here is Denise’s account of her prison visits:

In HK prisons every inmate has to talk to visitors behind glass windows.  When I walked to the special room that the prison prepared for us to see some female inmates I walked by the visiting room and behind the inmates who were sitting there to see their families/friends.  It was a very strange scene – in the first window was a young Chinese female inmate who was probably in prison for the first time.  Seeing her family through the glass, she was crying and screaming like a baby!  On the other side of the glass was an older lady who was probably her mother and she was also crying but still tried to comfort the young girl by saying - time will fly by quickly!  The sounds and the picture were overwhelming and my heart went out to them!  A few windows down was an inmate who appeared to be a “repeat offender” as she was laughing and talking to her visitors without any reaction to the commotion around her!  What a contrast in response to a difficult experience!

In the first group of females there were ten inmates and they were invited to sing some Christian songs.  One of the songs was talking about the sun above the clouds and the sun represented God and Hope in our lives.  The month of May is the rainy season in HK and we have had a lot of rain but that day when we went to prison the sun finally came out.  I shared a short message to encourage them and used the weather to highlight that no matter what situation they are facing now, there is always hope in God.  As I encouraged them to not give up, I had no idea how God was using this message to speak to their hearts.

One of the ladies, JY, cried so hard while listening and later told me her sad story:  She and her husband are both drug addicts and have been in and out of prison many times.  They had only one son who was 9 years old.  When they were caught by the police carrying drugs, both of them were sent to prison for several years.  They arranged for her mother to take care of their son.  The day before, she was looking forward to seeing her visitors and thinking that the grandmother would bring her son also.  However, grandma came alone and told her a tragedy happened that her son had recently drowned while going out to play in a pool!   She told me she really wanted to die because she blamed herself for not being a good mother who could not provide a normal family for him which ended his short life.  She said when she listened to the song and message, she asked herself, “Is there any hope for someone as bad as me?”  I spent time to counsel and pray with her.  At the end of the visit, JY was willing to make the decision to repent and accept Jesus as her personal Saviour!  

In the afternoon we went to a Prison Drug Rehabilitation Centre for young females aged 16 to 21 years old who have been caught taking drugs for a while.  They were all sent by the court for rehabilitation from six months to one year.  These young ladies have a structured program of marching and physical training everyday in order to help them become stronger to resist the temptation of drugs as well as attend some school classes. 

After a time of singing one of the young ladies, who has a beautiful childlike smile caught my attention.  I started to talk with “Yin” who is 20 years old.  Her first statement was “I have 2 children - a 4 year old daughter and a 2 year old son”!  I was quite shocked and almost did not know how to react for a few seconds.  She then told me her story of growing up in a broken family and raised by her grandparents who depended on social welfare.  Yin got into drug problems when she was only 14, met a young boy, got pregnant and gave birth to her first child at 16, two years later gave birth to her son.  This is Yin’s second time in the Rehab Centre and now her grandparents are taking care of her two children who are really their great grandchildren!  Yin was so excited to tell me that her grandparents bought her children to see her on Mother’s Day.  It made her feel so bad that these old grandparents had spent so much energy to bring 2 young children on two ferries to come to see her for just half an hour.  Yin asked me to pray for her grandparents and asked God to protect them and her two children.  Yin expressed that she wanted to be a good mother to her children and felt guilty that because of her immature behaviour now both her children and grandparents suffer from her sin.  She asked me why I had come so far to visit her as this centre is located on a HK outlying island.  I took the opportunity to share the Gospel with her.  Yin told me that she never had a Christian friend and she wished she would have met some Christians who could have influenced her life on a different path.  I promised to send her a Bible before I left. 

“Moon” was another young girl that I talked with.  She told me she is 18 years old but she looks only 15 and you would never believe she was a drug addict!  Unfortunately, Moon’s parents divorced when she was a child and her mother left her.  Her father was a drug addict so Moon grew up in a family where her father’s “bad friends” were around her.  Moon already has a history of taking drugs for 4 years!  The worst part of this particular drug is that it has damaged her brain and kidneys.  She told me that she has to go to toilet more than 30 times in a day and at night she cannot even have one hour of good sleep without going to the toilet or wetting the bed.  Her memory is also bad in that she cannot concentrate to read and remember things!  My heart ached for her when I looked at this beautiful young girl, Moon, whose life has been messed up by sinful things and influences in this world.  Moon said she was weak and could not resist the temptation to take drugs leaving her with no hope and no future!  I prayed for her with tears rolling down my face and I asked God to heal her body and help her to become stronger.  I also encouraged her to give her life to God and let Him help and strengthen her to face the future.  At the end of our visit Moon asked me if I could share more about God next time.

We thank God for these open doors in these young ladies’ hearts.  There is still a long way to walk with them, to encourage them, to help them rebuild their identities and to share God’s love with them!

Please PRAY for -  

Ø  All these young ladies in the Rehabilitation Centre  that they will be touched by the Holy Spirit in a miraculous way to know there is a God who loves them, will never abandon them and to have hope in Him!

Ø  Denise and other volunteers  that they will have freedom to share God’s love with these ladies, to be their listeners, encouragers and comforters, to walk alongside with them in finding a new and meaningful life.

Randall and Denise

~ Murray Lincoln ~

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