Michelle Perry's true-life story is both inspiring and moving, not to mention convicting. Born without a leg and surviving many surgeries in her early years, she went on to embrace the love of Jesus and seek to live out that love through her own life. Her journey eventually led her to Sudan in Africa where she currently lives amongst, ministers, evangelizes, and loves, a group of children and their communities as she seeks to spread the love of Christ.
Reading about life in the Sudan is deeply touching, and I was moved to tears by reading of Perry's experiences caring for the Ã¢â¬Ëleast of these' that she finds in need of prayer and attention there. Love Has a Face isn't chronologically arranged, but is presented more in the form of vignettes or snapshots and jumps forwards and backwards through time as Perry reflects upon her journey and experiences.
Readers uncomfortable with charismatic expressions and experiences of faith may find some of Perry's writing off-putting as she speaks of seeing visions, encountering Jesus face to face, watching God heal through prayer, and more. Though I'm not charismatic, I found the sharing of her personal faith-walk inspiring, though it differs from my own.
Perry calls each reader to delve more deeply into love with their Savior and work wherever god has placed them to spread that love abroad amongst those they are called to work with. Her faith-building story certainly reminds us that God is still very actively at work in the world around us.
Love Has a Face by Michelle Perry is the inspiring story of the author's work at an orphanage in the Sudan. Perry's story is beautiful and thick with the power of God's love. She tells story after story of His amazing grace working through the lives of these small children who have come to find their identity in Him. Despite being born missing her left hip, leg, and kidney, she never focuses on her lack or uses it as an excuse to do less. She's fallen in love with God's heart and wants to share His love with the people who need it most. From garbage dumps and bars to prisons and army camps, she has spread God's Word throughout Sudan. Perry has learned to rely on God for provision in the direst of circumstances, talking her way out of a machine gun pointed in her face, providing lollipops for over 200 people when she knew only 96 were there. Not every miracle is huge, like the the parting of the Red Sea, but each day is filled with small miracles as God has blessed this home to over 80 children who would otherwise starve in this war-ravaged country. The stories are often so jaw-dropping, that I repeatedly gave the book to my husband saying, "You have to read this!" Perry always points to God as the source of the blessings, refusing to accept glory for herself. Her story will galvanize readers into being more active with their faith, to reach out to all of God's children with His love, which is just what Perry would want.
When Jesus tells Michele Perry to move to the war torn Southern Sudan she feels like it must be a mistake. The lower parts of the world are no stranger to Michele, she has spent time in the slums of India, and gone to church with the homeless under the freeway. But to live in the African bush and raise orphans seems like a job for someone else. But to question God is not Michele's way. He life has been lived with an undying faith in Jesus, even, if not especially, in the face of impossibility. This is a remarkable story, but then Michele is a remarkable woman. The fact that she is missing her left leg has no bearing on the things she can do. Her story weaves in and out of her current experiences on and off the Sudanese compound where she takes in, feeds, heals, and loves often times more orphaned children than humanly possible. She also pulls in the experiences that ultimately lead her not only to Sudan, but to her unique relationship with God, or "Papa" as she calls Him. It is Michele's complete faith that allows her to be a part of miracles all the way from helping an unwanted child know he is loved, to healing infectious skin diseases. This is not your typical missionary story, Michele spreads the word of love through example, not a superficial promise through an abstract pile of paper in a leather cover. Her story renews the view of missionary work. She is there to help any way possible, and to do it in the name of God, not simply to tell people their thinking is wrong. Her writing style is instantly engaging, and doesn't travel in a linear narrative, working to build interest for later stories. The book reads as though she is sitting by a fire for consecutive nights telling her story as it comes and as it is relevant. Though her life is about preaching the word of God, I never felt like that was her goal in her writing. Her love for Jesus came through her actions and story, not an all out assault.
This book reminds me Lidia Princes Appointed to Jerusalem. Both the women went to wild places, following Jesus desire to touch the least. I think, on my example, the book is a good encourage to follow Jesus and to be His vessel of love. Just read it and you enjoy seeing loving Gods heart and His providence in life of a little woman an author and in life of many others who have been touched through her obedience to Heavenly Daddy.