I am not afraid to say that I am a prayer warrior. I love to prayer for friends in far away places and those who travel into remote areas to serve the Lord. I love to get an SMS saying I need your prayers right now. And honestly the one thing I can do is pray. Pray that they will be rescued in their time of need and prayer that they will be able to serve the Lord to their very best ability, given their circumstances. I love when one of our missionary friend expresses a need and they provide an opportunity for us to fill in the gap and pray for them.
Usually I am in no way able to help them!!! When friends need a new jeep for their work in the desert or another friend needs money for a plane ticket home, a family can’t travel without their child’s papers… I can not provide in any way, but I can pray. I know that I can not solve the problem but for God our mountains are indeed molehills. How often are our plans thwarted and our complicated solutions to our human problems are solved by God’s undeniable hand.
I have no trouble teaching our children that God is our provider and on days when there really has been very little to eat in our house, God has always provided the next meal in the most amazing ways. There have been times that our gas tank has been empty, really empty and I know that the only reason we have gotten where we need to go is the result of earnest prayers from short people in the back seat. Our family is indeed powered by prayer and time and time again God has shown us that the things that we worry about are really nothing that God can not provide.
That being said, I am the sort of person that likes to have everything together, in order and sorted out. I like to present a package, and I love to support… I love to help. I am not so good at saying I need help or support, in fact I am quite good at saying everything is fine and I dread the thought us being a burden to anyone, especially so many of us!!! Well nice idea, but I am learning that that is not God’s idea of service at all. God is using us to allow other people to help and support as well, providing others with opportunities to enjoy serving as much as we do!!!
Within days of finally saying to our kids that the time had come, and while we have talked about missions and read about missions and taught about missions, it really is a theme in our home… Well, within hours of committing to go and joining the team from our church, on their annual short term mission to Lesotho: our geyser broke – it has been repaired; our car ground to a halt – and we have stayed home a lot; and our oven broke, our one working hot plate has been repaired and nobody is starving around here!!! The big thorn in our travel plans was our vehicle… Obviously to get from Cape Town to Lesotho we would need a vehicle and we were all out of a vehicle, especially a vehicle that seats ten. We decided to pray as a family and wait and see if we would be able to go or not. We carried on, getting passports and making plans to go anyway. All the while hoping we would be able to get there. I am so glad we did… Someone in our church has generously offered us a car for the trip. Folk have gathered round us and provided us with more than we need, even treats for our kids on the long long road trip.
So we are going to Lesotho… where we really felt a need to support and encourage a local school and I blogged about how great it would be to help them. We certainly are not in a position to buy school materials for a little school in the country on our own. But we could encourage them and move alongside them and be friends with them. There are children in that school without parents, without families and our kids will be able to play with them and make friends with them – even for a short time. So while we can take ourselves and while we can hopefully provide them with encouragement I really wanted to gift them in a practical way.
And that is where you all have contributed to our project and our call for school materials in a way that I could never have imagined. Much as I would have liked to say we have a box of school materials and we are off to Lesotho, we have learnt so much from all of you and your generosity and we have been overwhelmed by the response to our request for school materials. I have to say I had no idea quite so many people would respond… It has just been fantastic and overwhelming in the nicest possible way!!! Despite my best efforts to do it all – your hearts have opened up and our kitchen is literally exploding with school materials, and more packages are piling in every day!!! I thought we would be taking a box of school materials, well it turns out we are taking a jam packed trailer full of school materials… it is thanks to our readers and your generous hearts. I just can’t thank you enough for your support.
The lesson I have learnt here: When one prays that you might serve God and that he might use you wherever He may need, that actually He wants to use you, not so much to serve, but to enable others to serve. I always thought that that prayer: “Lord send me wherever you want me to go…” meant I would be washing dishes or cleaning bathrooms in a remote area of the world… and I am doing that, well Fish Hoek isn’t that remote. I didn’t realize it meant stripping me of my “I can do it all attitude” and teaching me to get so much better at receiving!!! It says in Galations 6:2 Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ. I didn’t realize that meant that while I carried some burdens for others they would be carrying burdens for me… I had this inflated idea that it was all about me carrying other folks burdens!!! I tell you these are interesting times, I am such a slow learner and I am learning every step of the way!!!