The finishi….starting line!
The missionary organisation in question covers an enormous area largely composed of lawn. It’s almost as if they wanted to put that fitted carpet, omnipresent inside, also on the outside. But there are also artificial ponds and trees surrounded by flowers with such care that it’s as if something doesn’t quite match with reality. A private, luxuriant forest surrounds their offices, which are themselves also meticulously well-ordered in a building that looks as if it is carved into the rock. I have the impression of being an envoy from Europe who has come in quest of reinforcements from the United States army. In a few minutes I’ll be late…..
Before entering the feudal domain, I have to cross a barricade with guards who ask to see our papers. Are they really expecting me in such a place? The security guard removes any remaining doubts as he removes the barrier. The road is so clean that it looks as if it has just been drawn for a children’s book of fairy-tales and legends. A delegation, all wearing ties, is waiting for me at the entrance and welcomes me, just like the technical team of a Formula One racing driver, they show me the toilets, pat me on the shoulder, sympathising with my misfortunes.
The toilets are so luxurious that you feel guilty about going (it’s a bit like pooing in a salad bowl placed in the middle of the living-room table). For the little Swiss guy that I am, everything is excessive here, but I refuse categorically to judge what I see, I’m just in another dimension with other rules. I wet my head under the tap to chase away as best I can the last shreds of tiredness. It’s time! In a jiffy I find myself on a platform. The audience is staring at me, curious to hear what this guy from nowhere has to say to them…(unless it’s because of the water still running down my face).
I don’t have much vocabulary in English, but what I have I give to them in good heart, but at any rate, it’s with the latter (my heart) that I speak. My sharing has the same effect as a key, giving me access to their hearts. Emotion can be seen on their faces. From now on, whenever I cross paths with someone from this closed world, they will recognise me as being the little guy that Jesus found thanks to a Christian comic book thrown in a bin…..
The testimony of K.
When I finish, a respectable elderly man sits down at my table and shares his testimony with me:
‘I was a junkie, lost in New York and, like you, I had nothing at the start but I found Jesus in a rehab centre. When I telephoned my father, a practising Jew, to tell him, he wept. My mother took the phone from him and said to me:
“Your father isn’t crying with sadness, but with joy, because we too have found Jesus and we’ve been praying for you for a long time…..”
Ten years later I become head of the centre. Reagan, the United States president in person comes to visit my business and congratulate me on its good management. I have become one of the bosses of McDonald’s aid sector, I’m here now sharing my expertise for my neighbour…..’
The guy pats me on the shoulder and leaves. I’ll learn later that he is one of the big bosses of the place, that his presence on that day is exceptional and that after listening to me, he passes on the message to those who are to see me to take my work seriously.
Amazing! Awesome! Wonderful!
What enthusiasm on seeing my drawings! (You’d think they had all just won the lottery!)
Everyone seems in favour. The director offers me a week at a hotel! After my time of sharing, I am invited to several meals, you’d think that all the doors of the country had been opened! They are talking of a future tour so that I can give my testimony and interviews with TV companies, meetings with key figures. The director is already asking me to present them with a draft version of ‘Comic Book Without Words 2’!
Return to (my) earth
During the return flight, I have something of the impression of returning victorious from a battle, I have the impression of having my suitcases full of promises. But I am happy to be back in the workshop in my little country that I love, because even if I have to confront its nagging problems of survival, it is nevertheless my homeland whose logic I understand better.
A short time has passed and the mission writes to tell me that they are not going to get involved in my comic book project. But when I ask them, I insist on knowing what the problem is, I get no answer. So I tell them that, if it’s a question of money, I agree to do it for free, because the aim of reaching all these people comes before my interests….but no-one replies to me any more. The line goes dead….
At the end of the day, I find myself back at square one, without any more results….
Why? After all, I was sincerely counting on God’s intervention! (?) Maybe something will come out of all of this later on… (or not)
Resigned, I place the book in a drawer, (next to the Spanish project) and decide to go back to other projects. But before that…..I sleep.