The next morning, the family realized that the night of sleep had not improved the security of the Congo; rather it had made it worse. A group of rebel soldiers in Goma had commandeered a plane, flown across country to the port city of Matadi and gained control of that town within the hour. They had begun their march towards Kinshasa, the capital.
The family ate breakfast and broke up to do different tasks: Alessandra, Cathy, and the girls would go to the market to stock up against a few days of hunkering down. Jimmy was tasked with sitting near the two-way radio to catch any news. Rob went with Katey to check on events of the night and gain counsel for their family’s security.
The news Rob learned was not good. A group of fleeing government soldiers were predicted to land in Ilebo that night, and they were looking to reward themselves with their back-pay by looting the town. It was decided that Alessandra should move into the main house from her room in the depot. The main house had bars on the windows. The depot lacked that security.
“Alessandra,” Rob advised, “get one of the girls to help you take down your mosquito net. If soldiers entered our property, they would think very little of raping you or worse. I doubt that anything that serious will happen, but I think we should err on the side of caution.”
Alessandra nodded her head in silent agreement. She was shocked. In her wildest dreams, she had never anticipated the gripping terror that she felt rising inside of her. She began to wonder if she would see her family again, and it hurt her to think they were home worrying about her.
Cathy approached Alessandra to offer help. She cracked under the strain and began sobbing,” Cathy, I’ve never been so frightened. I can’t deal with this kind of fear. I’m not cut out for it.”
“I would have to disagree with you. With all you’ve been through, you have already learned to trust your Heavenly Father. The Romans 8:28 promise still applies, even in this situation. Alessandra nodded her agreement but continued to battle her fears.
A verse following the one Cathy reference is, “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or the sword?” (Ro. 8:35) Alessandra finds herself facing distress from the rising peril of being in the Congo. But she’s being tested as to her level of faith in the one Who loves her dearly. As we ourselves face uncertainty, let’s remember that we are deeply loved, deeply cared for by our Omnipotent God. Let’s trust Him.