We recently received notice that there are roughly 90 boys in the two orphanages we visit. That’s roughly 25-30 more than we expected, which is okay with us. We usually plan on getting extra stuff and writing extra letters, but this time we had a wonderful surprise.
One of our high school Spanish teachers was at Wade’s, Rachael’s brother, graduation party. She had provided Spanish comics for the kids on for our last trip and just happened to ask if we needed anything else for our upcoming trip June 23-30. It came to me that we might have a perfect timing of events since her Spanish students were going through finals last week. Finals in high school tend to result in a lot of down time, the way I remember it. So I threw out the idea that she could possibly motivate some of her students to use their Spanish in a meaningful way by having them write some letters to these kids in Guatemala. By the end of day she had 19 letters waiting for us! They don’t require us to translate them like a lot of the ones from church do. I figure we saved at least a couple of hours just by bumping in to her!
Some people might say that we have good networking skills or that we were just in the right place at the right time. But I think faith in God is much more than just a few coincidences happening to a person. I think we willfully act in a certain direction, believing that God provides for the work he commissions. Perhaps the clearest story of this happening is with Abraham in Genesis.
In Genesiss 22, God tests Abraham. At this point he’s old and been through a lot that developed his faith in God. He’s already seen God make promises to bless him and make him into a great nation. Now he’s a wealthy man, the father of a great nation, and finally the father of his very own natural born son, Isaac. God’s test, at this point, is to see if Abraham will obey him even when it comes to the point of trusting God with his only son, which is arguably the most valuable thing to Abraham at this point.
In verse 2, God says, “Take your son, your only son, Isaac, whom you love, and go to the region of Moriah. Sacrifice him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains I will tell you about.”
When they get up to the mountain, Isaac asks Abraham about the sacrifice: “The fire and the wood are here, but where is the lamb for the burnt offering?”
And Abraham’s faithful response was, “God himself will provide the lamb for the burnt offering, my son.”
There is no way that Abraham knew the outcome of this situation, but I think he believed that God would come up with some way to fulfill his promise to Abraham. Whatever the outcome, it was more important to Abraham to willfully obey than to question or refuse God.
I think there are a ton of great lessons to be extrapolated from this story, but I think today I see that Abraham was obedient because he knew God to be a great provider for needs. I hope that through this whole Guatemala era of our lives that I become very obedient to God as I see and understand that God has provided for us and will continue to provide for our needs!