” …revealed to us by his Spirit.”
1 Corinthians 2:10
Last Sunday night, Michael and I were settling in to read a book together before bed, and our current favorite, his “Twinkle Book”, was nowhere to be found. (It’s a devotional called My Grandma and Me, with a number of songs in it to the tune of “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star”.) I tried to substitute another book (being ready for bed myself), but he insisted that nothing else would do. So, in desperation, I took his hand and together we asked Jesus to help us find the Twinkle Book. Immediately I felt we should look under the bed (again) and sure enough, way back in the corner, we found it.
Michael was impressed (so was I!) and he asked how God told me to look there. This led to a discussion of how we can listen for His voice and respond to it whenever we need His help. So he didn’t stop there. He said, “There’s something else I miss – going to the beach.” I told him our car was still not working and that we should pray together for Granddad to figure out how to fix it. We held hands again and asked for the car to work so we could go to the beach this summer.
During the time John was in Nigeria, our old Ford Contour had died, the Subaru we had gotten for Derek developed a leak in the head gasket, and the moped Hannah had been using to get to the methadone clinic started acting up. I purchased a 1998 Passat, but on the way to the airport to pick John up, it refused to start in a Walmart parking lot, and we both had to be retrieved by a friend. Our mechanic had worked on it for a morning with no success, and John had been doing research and tearing it apart for a week with the same result. But the day after Michael prayed, he found the solution! and we have a working vehicle again.
I didn’t have much to show for the past several months on my latest report to my Seed Company supervisor:
- Sent out three email updates, and added five posts to my blog.
- Prepared income tax documents for the family.
- Worked through the changes in Wycliffe’s financial policies and updated our Ministry Budget.
- Did some work on the Hona text.
- Started going to NarAnon meetings again (support group for the families of addicts).
- Provided continuity, love and structure to grandson, Michael.
- Sent John off to Nigeria during the month of May, and spent most of the month in the car driving Hannah to her daily methadone clinic, court-ordered rehab classes and court dates.
- Handled the sale of our car when it died, and the purchase of a replacement.
- Considered quitting The Seed Company and going to work full time, and in the end thought better of it.
But it did list the following items for which I am very thankful:
- Derek continues to thrive. He helped me in many ways while John was gone, providing practical and emotional support. He is almost ready to get his driver’s license, and is looking at job possibilities.
- Michael is a daily source of joy. He is growing in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men.
- The medication I am taking as part of a clinical trial to treat polycystic kidney disease continues to keep my creatinine numbers steady, and John has not had problems with kidney stones for a while now. His energy levels are better too (although still recovering from his time in Nigeria).
- John had a very successful time with the N team in May, in spite of coming down with malaria in the midst of the checking.
- Hannah and boyfriend Joe are both now on methadone, and are rebuilding their lives.
- Working a twelve-step program with a sponsor at NarAnon is helping me regain my balance and take control of my life again.
John’s malaria and my trouble with three cars and a cantankerous moped while he was away have made me aware once again that doing the work we do places us squarely in the midst of a spiritual battle. It’s not surprising that the enemy would try to tempt me to quit and go back to the workplace, with the lure of steady income, cars that run, and alleviation of the guilt I feel for being unable to work on my assignment. There are even two full-time openings at the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association for writers… But I have recommitted myself to this work and all the challenges it brings with it.
My supervisor’s response to my report could have been, “Go ahead and take that job at BGEA!” But instead, she wrote:
“I just admire and appreciate your brave spirit and that you keep pressing on with your commitment. Praying for you that you can just keep right in the middle of the Lord’s plan for you and be at peace.”
I pray the same for you today – may you be at peace in whatever circumstances you are facing. Thank you for pressing on, along with me, with your commitment to the Bibleless people of the world.
In the middle of the Lord’s plan,