I never really thought too closely about forever death until I had the opportunity to stare it in the face. During my time in Burkina Faso I was terrified as I realized that all around me people were dying and would spend an eternity separated from God, not because they rejected Him, but rather because they never had the opportunity to reject Him.I call this forever death. I know that all death apart from God is technically forever death, but death apart from the opportunity to know Christ is particularly frightening.
It was again driven home to me today when I read this story about a mine collapse in Burkina. Burkina is a country with a fair amount of gold but due to a lack of investment capital, machinery and infrastructure, there is very little that is unearthed. However, when given the opportunity Burkinabe will pursue gold in order to provide some money to offset the average household income which amounts to around $300 per year. In a horrific turn of events at least 46 Burkinabe are now presumed dead after the mine that they were in collapsed. They are guessing that 46 died because they counted that many shoes at the entrance of the mine. Unfortunately, as any of you who have traveled in Africa know, many people don't wear shoes at all, particularly children.
This tragedy occured within an hour or two of Dissin, the village that Tracy and I called home. As I think tonight about those 50 or so that have died I can't help but wonder how many had ever even heard of Christ?
God, I pray, please call many to share your word with the unreached. Send us out to spread Your Name, Your glory and Your grace to those who desparately need to hear. God, forgive us of calloused hearts when we hear stories like this and aren't driven to our knees in prayer for those who are condemned to an eternity of separation from God as a result of it.