On this, a Thankful Thursday, I have a big blessing to share and I'm so excited about it!
That yucky old wrecked 1998 Toyota Sienna van? The one the police officers said was totaled for sure? They told me the insurance company would "low ball" us, giving the bare minimum. One police officer said, feeling sorry for me I think, "It will be hard to replace a family vehicle with what they'll give you."
But he doesn't know my God. Somehow, as soon as I pulled that wrecked car to the shoulder I knew this was a God thing. Even to the girl who hit me I chuckled, saying, "You probably did me a favor. This van probably doesn't have much life yet."
Still, when I looked up the Blue Book value for my van, I expected less than $2000 from the insurance company. The condition was certainly poor, with missing door handles, a missing inside door panel, broken air conditioning, a loud exhaust problem, a sluggish starter.....
So what an incredible blessing when husband told me the truth.
$4,600 for the van! Can you believe it? Not only will we be able to pay off husband's hernia surgery bill, and anesthesiology bill, in full, but there's something much more.
Long before Christmas we put a prayer in our jar. "Please God, may we be able to give family gifts to all our Compassion children?"
Christmas came and went and we could only give a meager amount. We kept praying, none of us knowing how God would possibly answer this prayer, but remembering He is faithful! We wanted to give $200 to each family, which could start a business, or buy a roof, or mattresses and bedding, kitchen supplies, large sacks of rice, beans, flour, a water purifier, clothes and shoes.....just sleeping through the night because of greater physical comfort is a huge blessing to Compassion children. It's not unusual to sleep on cardboard for some of these children, with a leaky roof over their heads. Appalling doesn't begin to cover it.
Of all the scenarios I played out in my mind, I never imagined an auto accident would be our answer. And do you know I haven't stopped praying for the girl who hit me? The Holy Spirit faithfully brings her to mind at least twice a day. She helped me, I'm helping her, and through the whole thing our Compassion children will be helped and only God gets the glory!
I knew as we prayed night after night that I wasn't called to take a graveyard job and upset our family and my own health, in order to give to our Compassion children. I knew it wouldn't be a burdening thing, this giving. I knew it would come from Him.
I close today with a quote from our friend Ann Voskamp. Her experiences remind me not to forget my people. Yes, God asks us to give, but not without equipping us first.
Ann Voskamp from Haiti, Feb 20: It was when I had been here in Haiti in the peak blaze of last July, Johnny, our translator with Compassion, he had just told me how he had meandered out of the Hotel Montana when the deeps had roared quaking mad and blasted dust up the nape of his neck.
And I had turned to him and said it like an even madder fool: “What if you could ever just get out of here– get you and your family to the States?”
And he had looked me in the eye, and it’s what he said next that drilled right up my marrow: “I am Moses. I do not leave my kin.”
I am Moses and I do not leave my kin… and it doesn’t matter if you are born in the land of LCD screens and master ensuites and SUVs with leather seats and turkey with cranberries laid out on granite countertops — When you’re the one who ends up in the palace, you don’t forget your people. Just ask Moses or Esther or Jesus.
“Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen:And that verse slams me to a stop:
to loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke,
to set the oppressed free and break every yoke?
Is it not to share your food with the hungry
and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter—
when you see the naked, to clothe them,
and not to turn away from your own kin?“
~Isa. 58: 6-7
The fast the Lord chooses? Is not to turn away from your kin.
The fast the Lord chooses is not to turn away from your kin, and I am Moses and I do not leave my kin, and and the bare bottom line is that if you are going to keep company with Jesus, you are going to have to give up keeping up with the Joneses. What could you want more than this?
What could you buy that is worth more than company with Jesus and your kin?