The purpose of this blog is to help me look back. I want to look back and feel again what I felt while here in Cambodia. I want to remember what I saw, who I met, and those with whom I worked. I want to be able to recall the goodness of the people and their stories. The stories are incredible. Just recently, one of the men that I work with from the Service Center told me about his beginnings on this earth and his mother.
My friend is the manager of the Service Center. He is a wonderful man. A very diligent and faithful man. He and I were discussing the Tuol Sleng Prison, which is in the middle of downtown Phnom Penh. It was originally a school until Pol Pot and his regime of evil invaded Cambodia in 1975.
My friend told me that he was born during this time of Pol Pot. His mother and grandmother were forced workers in the rice fields. This was hard labor. The two women worked in a field of food yet they were starving. His mother was pregnant with him as she labored everyday from sun up to sun down. If you complain or let those with authority think you can't do your work, they would just kill you. Sometimes they would kill them just because they wanted to. Frail and starving she worked in the fields. Quietly one day she gave birth to her baby boy right there in the rice field. The grandmother held the baby in the palms of her hands. They gave him a Khmer name which means "lucky". Lucky to be alive. She continued to work in the field that day out of fear that they would kill her and her baby. She never skipped a beat. This woman is a modern day Esther, Ruth, or Naomi. Her son became an educated man. A kind and gentle man. He found the gospel of Jesus Christ and now serves as a Bishop today. I never want to forget him.
I never want to forget the children. They are beautiful children.
I never want to forget the every day people that I see trying to eek out a living. Most live on around $200 per month.
There are so many things I must not forget...