He Answers (Part Two)
23 Jan 2017
Prayer is an invitation to our loving and all powerful God to impact our situations. What joy it must bring to his father heart when we ask him for help! Of course, God can do whatever he wants whenever he wants, but he loves to respond to our prayers. Here are some of the ways he has answered prayers in the last few months for our missionaries around the world…
We arrived back in Australia on the 12th December and the next day we received a message that all new work permits in Thailand had been put on hold for 13 weeks. Our volunteer from Pioneers USA was due to pick up her permit that very day, but was told not to go in. All we could do was pray. On the 15th she got a call to quickly go in and pick it up. This is a miracle and a great answer to prayer.
Our desire to serve the Western Apache people in the little mining town of Globe has resulted in an idea to start a Christ-based program, similar to Alcoholics Anonymous but overtly Christian, to help these native American people deal with hurts, hang ups and addictions. As we have prayed as a team for people to help us, we have been led over and again to those who are willing. Many of them are native people who are anxious to see their own people set free.
South East Asia
We have been looking for an office manager for 4 months. They needed to be Thai, Christian and speak very good English. Everyone I told said, “it will take a miracle”. I looked and looked. I visited lots of churches, was meeting loads of people, practicing Thai, building trust and getting well connected, but still no good options came. But there was always a sense that God had the perfect person for us. After 3 months however I did start to have some doubts? What if God doesn’t provide? I started to retrace my steps and one Sunday met a great young lady Sarah. She ticks all the boxes and is very keen. Her father is from a hill tribe and loves Jesus and told her to apply. She starts in 3 weeks when we open our new office. Had God provided straight away, I would be so much poorer for the experience, and have a lot less local Christian friends to support our work into the future. Why do I ever doubt my heavenly Father? He’s so good to me.
An answer to prayer is seeing God at work in my workplace, a Communist Government public high school. Their textbooks only talk about the secular Christmas. I felt liberty to share the true meaning of Christmas and that Jesus came to save sinners. All my students that week, around 500, heard this story. I am the only Christian on this campus that I know of. Unknown to me, some of the other teachers asked students to make posters for their classroom bulletin boards for all to see. Many of these posters had stories of Jesus being God’s son and Christmas being a time to celebrate the birth of Christ. I was very touched, and could see God’s plans at work in this school, as well as God’s sovereignty and protection of what I am doing here.
For a little over a year we have prayed for my French teacher to become interested in reading the bible. She corrected a sermon for me a couple of months ago, and afterwards said she would love to have an intimate relationship with God. She read the bible with my wife once after that. We believe she is still interested, but the opposition to meeting with her since then has been fierce. We pray on.
Going to South East Asia
I was praying for my neighbor in Australia who doesn’t know Jesus. She had been coming along to a women’s small group at our house on Wednesday nights. Then we had to move out to get ready to go overseas, and her little girl started playing basketball on Wednesday nights, so she wasn’t able to come anymore. I was praying that she would meet some other Christians that would encourage and look after her. Months passed, but just a few weeks ago, I caught up with her for a coffee. She told me that she had joined a group of Christian women who meet to pray on Wednesday nights while her kids play basketball. I was just so amazed at how God had not only provided a new community for her, but a community that met at the place and time her little girl was playing basketball!
South East Asia
We have been sent as disciple makers but have felt the pressure to do social justice, or that this task is just too great on our unreached island. After being in a place of brokenness and emptiness, feeling useless with waiting and waiting, we felt the Lord saying to us ‘Go hard or Go home’. With tears we prayed some big prayers and over the next three days He provided for us: a visa which frees us up to do ‘disciple making’, a needy believer family to love and disciple, and access to a local uni teaching English (which is where we were hoping to be). It has encouraged us to be more bold, have more patience, and confirmation that He will indeed provide for all of our needs.
Do you know a missionary? Why not pray for them right now? And to regularly pray for them make sure you are receiving their news updates with their prayer points, and their stories of how God is answering.