Thursday, July 26, 2007

One of the difficulties in being from the United States and ministering in foreign lands is the prevailing belief in other countries that all people from the US are wealthy, and have money to meet any need.

We are wealthy compared to what others have, there is no doubt. However, I do not begin to have the kind of money necessary to meet all of the needs I see. This does not keep people from asking. I guess I can appreciate the boldness with which I am often approached, as others try to improve the circumstances in which they are trying function.

One such day, I was traveling with the team to a school in a village outside of Piura. Deanna had to remain back with a sick student on this day. Our team set up inside the school yard and shared the drama with several dozen students.

When the drama was over, and our ministry time was nearly complete, I was approached by an interpreter telling me that the Principal wanted to talk to me. I headed over and met he and the Vice Principal. They seemed very close, I suppose it could have been his wife.

Anyway, they told me how much they appreciated our team coming to share with the students. They went on to say that this school was Catholic, and that it served the poorest students of the area, and had nearly no budget from which to function. They asked me if I could help support them.

I had a strange array of emotions in those moments. When asked to speak to them, I was immediately reminded of when BJ was asked to go to the Principal in a similar school to share his faith. I wondered if perhaps this was that school. It would be so awesome to meet the Headmaster he had led to Christ!

When asked for money, I was mindful of the fact that if I refused, I may step on any impact we may have had there. I also knew I had no money to give them.

I conveyed that we were a small ministry that operated on a very small budget, and that the students had to raise their own support in order to come. Then as I spoke, the Lord began to provide.

"Silver and gold have I none," I relayed, "but what I do have I will freely give to you." I told them the disciples had shared similarly in Scripture when they found themselves in a place of need, where what they had to give met spiritual needs over physical needs.

I began to share the Gospel with them. They stood very attentively as a crowd surged up around us, pulled in tight, then dissipated all within the span of our fairly brief conversation. I could tell by the looks on their faces that these were not those my son had shared with. The Lord had blessed me with my own opportunity to share with a man and woman in a position to make a real difference in the lives of the students.

Both educators gave their hearts to Christ in those closing moments. I was moved at their decisions. Like my son before me, I was reminded that these adults in a land where "plenty" is elusive, had made a decision that would impact the lives of many around them.

Initially, as we talked, they seemed embarrassed. However, the further the conversation went, the more hungry they appeared. Ultimately, we connected them with a local church that could disciple them, and help assure they understood the decision they had just made.

The Lord God is incredible, and His provision is never late. The opportunities He provides for us to share are immense, if we are seeking to be faithful.

Thank you Lord Jesus. I give you my Praise!!! Please meet the significant needs of the students in that school, Father. Please give the Principal the wisdom and contacts to raise up funds to meet the needs of those young men and women. Their need is enormous, but sufficiency is found in You. As they begin to walk in this, reveal further truth and understanding to them, as they fill the calling you have laid on their lives. Amen.

brent (dad)


At 3:55 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I remember this school. The lives that were touched there will one day reap in the heavenly benefit with us! Praise be to the Father of All! I am so happy that I am coming to see you next week! Pray for me please as this coming Sunday will be my last Sunday at Warren and the following Wednesday my last youth activity EVER! I want to tell my youth ministry about what God did this summer, but there is so little time!
Following Him!


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