Tuesday, December 17, 2013

A sweet answer to prayer

Last week I felt led to spend two days praying specifically for our Hope Grows Campaign to build a new building for the church and school in Guatemala City.  Don't get me wrong - this project is usually at the top of my prayer list.  But I sensed God asking me to pray specifically that He would make the need known to His people and touch their hearts to give.  

Fundraising is such a balance.  On one hand I want to trust that God owns it all and will provide the money in His time, but on the other hand I am reminded that we often don't have what we need because we don't ask.  As I've grown weary in fundraising the past few months my approach has changed a bit.  I've been honest with God about my disappointment and what appears to me to be his "slowness" in answering my prayers.  You see, I KNOW that this building is God's plan.  He's made it clear to me over the past two years.  My latest approach is to ask Him what my part is, do that and then trust Him to do the rest.

Last week He clearly showed me that my "part" was to promote the need and PRAY specifically.  And so I did.  It was such a sweet time with Him.  I'm so thankful for His patience with me.  I began to see answers to my prayers.  People that I would never expect to give, have given in the past week.  Monday was a beautiful example of that.

We were having an Open House at our home when my friend and "spiritual Daddy" Ron Bansky walked through the door.  Ron was brave enough to serve on our very first Board of Directors when David and I presented him with this crazy idea of a ministry that became Caroline's Promise.  He helped us get started and then returned several years later to serve with us again and help take us to the next level.  Ron is one of my biggest supporters and encourages me, no matter what I do.  As soon as he walked in the door he handed me his cell phone and said "Here - talk to my sister Barb."

The week before, Ron had donated to Hope Grows through our Gifts with a Purpose and Barb had received the card acknowledging the gift in her honor.  She began to share with me how she had been overwhelmed with all of the "to dos" on her list that morning.  She was trying to finish writing Christmas cards and just cried out to God about how she wished the focus of the season was on Him and not all of this "stuff".  She said "Lord, I should be writing a Christmas card to YOU!"  That's when she thought of Guatemala and the new building.  The Holy Spirit whispered to her - "Barb, give to that school.  Give to the people who can't give back to you."

Barb was on the phone with Ron when he walked through my door Monday.  She was asking him for the address for Caroline's Promise when he handed me the phone and said "Here - talk to my sister Barb."  As she shared her story with me I cried and told her how God had asked me to pray specifically for Him to lay the Hope Grows project on the hearts of people.  Before we said "goodbye" Barb prayed for the Hope Grows campaign, for the people of Guatemala, and for me.  She asked God to bring in all the money and to surprise me with donations from people I would not expect.  You know what?  Last night I received an online donation and a check in the mail from two people I would never have expected to give.

I love how God works.  How He leads us and is so patient with us.  I love how He uses others to bless us.  I love His timing - even when it seems like he is "slow."  What are you waiting for God to do?  Are you weary of asking and not seeing answers?  My prayer is that He will remind you that He hears you and He is working.