This week’s post is a bit different—unfortunately an R-rated true story that I will give in PG details.
My ministry—517 Resources, Inc.—has partnered for many years with Andy Perkins of Bestwa, Inc. to minister to the children of Liberia, Africa, in communities still devastated by the horrible civil war there where child soldiers were the norm.
In 2008, a 4-year-old boy named Garlyee came to one of Bestwa’s feeding programs. He was stunted physically and mentally due to issues from birth that had been worsened by malnutrition. His father had shunned him, saying he was “too ugly to be my son.”
Fast-forward to the beginning of 2016 and Garlyee is a happy, healthy, strong, but small, 12-year-old pre-teen, still in the feeding program.
Then in February, while Andy was in country, Garlyee’s father kidnapped him and sold him to “people” involved in ritualistic human sacrifices who believe the blood and organs of a sacrificed child give them supernatural powers.
When the boy’s body was recovered, his mother was asked to identify him. Andy, knowing what this would do to Garlyee’s mother who was already suffering tremendous grief, agreed to take her place. Andy identified this little boy’s mutilated body and, quite honestly, has suffered horribly from the images ever since. This is a child he knew and loved. Andy’s organization had literally saved Garlyee, and donors’ generous gifts had kept this boy fed, clothed, and in medical care for years, but now, in a cruel and horrific moment of evil, his father ended his life for a few dollars. This crime has the fingerprints of Hell all over it.
When I heard about what had happened, immediately, I sensed from the Lord that His redemption had to be seen and Garlyee’s name needed to become a thorn in Satan’s side by this tragedy ultimately bettering the lives of other children and producing godly leaders who will stop his ignorant and barbaric activities like this. I contacted Andy and he and his board were already thinking about creating some type of memorial.
So this week, in partnership with Bestwa, we are establishing the Garlyee Baye Scholarship Fund to send young leaders to university in Liberia. Each recipient can know the story of this precious child and the life they might have that he never will. As a beloved member of a Christian community, Garlyee died at the hands of the enemy in martyrdom, so his name must live on as a testimony of what God can do in the lives of those who surrender their bodies and hearts to live for Him by the only blood with any power to save—that of Jesus Christ!
My most long-standing donor to 517 recently gave a surprise gift of $1000. This will become the foundational donation for the first goal of $2500, which will send 1 student to university for 1 semester, paying for tuition, books, room, and board. This is our humble beginning point to raise an additional $1500 with the long-term goal of eventually creating an army of young revolutionaries for Christ. (Any amount over the $1500 will start the second scholarship.)
If you would like to be a part of funding Garlyee’s inaugural scholarship via on-line giving, click here.
If you would like to give by check, please send me a quick email to firstname.lastname@example.org and I will send back info. If you have given before, all contact info is the same.
You have my word every tax-deductible dime will go to fund this scholarship.
Thank you for allowing me to share a very different kind of post with you this week. Honestly, a story I didn’t want to tell. Today, may we be inspired to actually live the lives we too often only read about.
So take everything the Master has set out for you, well-made weapons of the best materials. And put them to use so you will be able to stand up to everything the Devil throws your way. This is no afternoon athletic contest that we’ll walk away from and forget about in a couple of hours. This is for keeps, a life-or-death fight to the finish against the Devil and all his angels. —Ephesians 6:11-12 MSG