The challenge of walking with the God who knows me
Names changed throughout except in some cases where the person involved has been or is in ministry.
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If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. 2 Cor 5:17
“Do not take along any gold or silver or copper in your belts; take no bag for the journey, or extra tunic, or sandals or a staff; for the worker is worth his keep.”
The time had come. We had all known from the beginning that it would happen and there was a bit of nervous excitement about it all. Nobody was too thrilled with the idea, but it was in the program so we would go through with it.
The plan was to go out on a serving project to serve a church in one of the outlying towns around the camp where we were having our training program. We were to go for a weekend from Saturday morning to Sunday night. So, what’s the problem? The problem was that we were to go with just enough money to buy petrol for coming back, and the intention was to not use that money. Further, we were not allowed to share with anyone that we had any needs – like a place to stay or food to eat.
We arrived at our designated town and went to the Police station. There we explained what we were doing and asked to make a call. They contacted a church for us. That church put us in contact with one of its members who needed some help around their house. When we got to them, we discovered that we had been sussed out. One of the teams had ended up at the same family the year before, so they knew what we were up to. That meant that the faith stretching struggle ended right there. They knew we needed food and somewhere to sleep and were happy to oblige. I struggled with that for a bit, but over time Jesus has shown me again and again that he likes to save us in unexpected ways. For me the least expected way was that we should be sent to a home that was prepared.
The true purpose of the trip however was to serve. In serving there was no question as to need and opportunity. They had a large home and for a number of reasons the garden needed a great deal of attention. This we duly gave and there was gratitude on all sides.
The next day, they gave us some money for our efforts on top of having fed and sheltered us. We were quite taken aback, but there were some needs on the training program and some extra cash would really help. One or two of the conferees had come in faith with no money to pay their way. So God through faith didn’t just provide for our needs, He was even sufficient for the needs and faith of others in the conference.
When all of the teams returned to the conference site, all but one had been looked after with food and accommodation. It was a time of stretching faith to see what God could do. Later it was to be a great source of encouragement when we were asked to go into full time ministry.