He will make a way
For the last year and a half, I have been sponsorship coordinator for a CarePoint in Swaziland, Africa where approximately 200 children come daily for food. The majority of these children are eating their only meal of the day. Through the work of a young woman who is an LXP graduate and lives in the community, investing in them multiple days a week, and in partnership with Children’s HopeChest and local missionaries, the children are blessed with not only physical nourishment, but also safety, love, small group discipleship in the Word, and grief counselling (the HIV epidemic has ravaged this country with the highest rate of any place in the world). My role is to increase awareness of the community, asking for sponsors, and coordinating annual trips to visit and invest in these precious people. We are committed to a long term, multi-year relationship to insure growth spiritually, physical improvements to the CarePoint, and to foster self-sustainability eventually. Grace Klein Community is sending a team to partner with Lesibovu in August this year, and we have 12 members committed to our team. We are now at crunch time with funds due, tickets for airfare needing to be purchased, and stress seems to overwhelm. Here is the email I sent to our team this week, as the Lord continually worked on me regarding this subject of humility and dependence on Him.
I wanted to share some honesty and encouragement with you all today. Lately, I have felt a lot of burden to make this trip come together, just like I do each year. The doubts start to creep in, and Satan knows how to discourage and overwhelm me with what seems like an impossible task. There is the illogical idea of taking months to plan the trip, expecting Him to provide thousands of dollars, and then dedicating weeks of my family’s life to spend in another country. Adding to all that is the stress of trying to manage two house payments for the past year, and James having a new job, with a different paycheck and pay date… NONE of this makes sense, but I remember – following Jesus usually doesn’t.
I don’t feel defeated, just almost a bit silly. Why I think that this will all fall into place seems ridiculous. It sure doesn’t look like it will on the surface. And, He could slam doors shut and maybe will. But at this point, I am reminded of my own human perspective, which is so far from what He wants me to view things from. It’s not coincidence that my Bible study this morning led me to this passage:
Ephesians 1: 15 For this reason, because I have heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love toward all the saints, 16 I do not cease to give thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers, 17 that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of him, 18 having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, 19 and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power toward us who believe, according to the working of his great might 20 that he worked in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places…
I love this precious exhortation from Paul. The church at Ephesus was known for their love towards other believers. I think our team could be described as such, and want to tell you thank you for your passion for serving others here, and in Swaziland! I also love Paul’s prayer for this body. He wants them to know Jesus in a deep, real way. The Amplified version I love says that he prayed that ‘the eyes of (their) hearts would be flooded with light to really know the hope that is believers”! Isn’t that awesome? I love the wording so much.
You know, struggling with doubts and fears and then reading that convicted me and helped me focus on the great power of our Lord. The Amplified version says “immeasurable and unlimited and surpassing greatness of His power” – such power He could raise Christ from the dead. But here I am worrying if He will provide financially, or get us organized and prepared sufficiently, and I feel unable to be the kind of leader I want to be. I am so thankful He showed me I’m NOT. I will try hard and pray to be wise, and I will lean on His direction, but it’s not up to me. I know that. Really. But obviously I needed to be reminded again, because pride creeps in and colors everything in my perspective. So, that’s my confession, and also my rejoicing for the day! 🙂
Since the day I wrote that email, we have received several financial gifts – some large, some small. My daughter asked for no presents for her birthday but donations for Swaziland, and received hundreds of dollars instead to credit toward the trip. Though we are nowhere near our ultimate goal of $20,000 for our team’s needs that should be provided within the next two weeks, but continue to trust. We have seen the Lord provide over $25,000 in just a few weeks last fall as we requested donations for shoes for the children, and had a matching grant to meet to drill a well. That money came in because the Lord moved in hearts and people obeyed in generous way. We know that He can do that again if it is His will for this team. Please pray with us as we seek to raise funds through a silent auction and other events, that God would bless our efforts. Above all else, please ask Him to remind us every moment that HE will make a way for us, and ultimately it is not up to our plans or work.
Thank you for your partnership with us in this ministry! Read more at hopechest.org/community/lesibovu.