As Amy Smith of Trinity South Sudan Ministry* prepared her Pibor team for evening worship with a reading from The Upper Room daily devotional guide, gunshots rang throughout the remote hamlet.
The meditation for that day, February 9th 2015, featured the testimony of a grandfather remembering his 17-year-old grandson who fell victim to a robbery and shooting. “He was a handsome, loving, and talented young man. Now, suddenly he was gone.”
As the Trinity South Sudan team heard gunfire, they dove under tables, face down to the earth, praying that haphazard bullets would not make their way through the walls and windows to where they were hiding. Having just read the devotional about another shooting, they were reminded that God is present in all circumstances, and they were comforted to know that, on this day, millions of readers of The Upper Room were praying and thinking about those who commit—and those who are victims of—acts of violence.
Thankfully, authorities apprehended the nearby shooter, and the ministry team in South Sudan was able to continue their evening service.
The Trinity South Sudan Ministry team experienced the reality of God’s love, protection, and mercy in Pibor that frightening day. They are thankful for the large community of believers that read The Upper Room and continually pray for those in need.
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*TSSM is a foreign ministry based out of Trinity Presbytery in Lexington, South Carolina, that has worked in Pibor, South Sudan, since 2009. They provide theological education, school system development, healthcare, and improved sanitation.