In the midst of the busyness of life, I am constantly thinking about and praying for my girls in Rwanda. If this is your first time reading my blog, welcome! I sponsor two girls from Rwanda, through an organization called Compassion International. Mukademari Beatrice and Uwineza Jacqueline are precious children of God, and I am incredibly blessed to be their sponsor!
This week, more than any other, I have come home exhausted from work, yet all I desire to do is to talk to my girls. Unfortunately, we can’t physically talk to each other. Graciously, Compassion provides an incredible online letter writing resource, which allows me to log in and write to my girls, any time my little heart desires. This week my little heart has desired to write to them every single day, so, that is how I have ended each day. This in turn makes me desperately long for the day we finally meet face to face. I have hope that I will meet them in person in October of 2015! At least that is the plan, so please pray that God would provide a way for me to get to Rwanda!
With that said, my heart has been pining for yet another child from Compassion. Her name is Blessing Muthoni, and since I discovered her at the Matthew West Concert in April, I haven’t been able to stop thinking about her or praying for her.
Have you ever had a person pop into your life for a millisecond, and then “poof” they are gone, but no matter how hard you try to put them out of your mind, you can’t?
Well, Blessing is that for me. Firstly, her name is “Blessing.” According to babynames.co.uk, “Blessing is a feminine name of English origin and comes from the English vocabulary word which connotes the idea of a God given treasure, or a fortunate event.” I mean, really? A “God given treasure!” Who wouldn’t want a “Blessing” in their life from God? Second, she is beautiful! As I surveyed the child packets on the Compassion display table, something inside of me made me pick up her packet. I was mesmerized by her, and then…I saw her birthday: May 11!!! The significance of her birthday being “that” day took me aback. Actually it paralyzed me. Blessing shares the same day of birth as my first child, (aka: dog) Zacchaeus. And, no, he wasn’t “just a dog.” That personification is simply not true, and is frankly offensive. In 2000, I had just moved to Texas, thousands of miles away from my family and friends, and in my loneliness, I needed a companion. Zacchaeus was always there for me. He listened. He unconditionally loved me. He licked the tears from my eyes. He made me better. His death, eight years later, was tragic, and I still regularly grieve his loss.
So back to the Compassion table at the Matthew West concert. Blessing’s packet was in my hands, and the reality of her birth date formed a massive lump in my throat.
Could this be God’s way of saying I could finally “let go” of the guilt I have been holding on to over Zacchaeus’ death?
I picked up the packet numerous times, but couldn’t muster up the courage to sponsor her. I questioned whether or not I was financially able to sponsor her, and I didn’t want to just sponsor her for a few months and then return her as if she was just some piece of paper. She, and all of the sponsored children, are real children who live in poverty. Sponsoring a third child would be a huge commitment, and while God seemed to be hitting me between the eyes, I couldn’t take the plunge. I did, however, write down her name, birth date and her sponsorship number, in case I needed it for later (wink, wink). Eleven days later I was in a wreck. I immediately concluded, “Hmmmm, that must be an answer to prayer? Had I sponsored her, I wouldn’t have been able to afford to continue sponsoring her,” because I anticipated that I would have to buy a new car. However, God provided. My car was fixed and restored, and my insurance is in process of settling.
The very day after my accident, I volunteered for yet another Compassion event. Once more there was a table full of child packets, but I couldn’t stop thinking about Blessing. You see, there is only one packet per child, so once a person takes that particular packet, there isn’t another one. There was no chance Blessing would be on that table. Her info would only be on the Matthew West concert tour. Even if one was to go online to Compassion.com to try and sponsor her, that person wouldn’t be able to. Trust me, I looked. Well, that settles it; there is only one packet per child, and Blessing wouldn’t be there to sponsor.
Fast forward yet another few weeks, I was awakened, in the wee hours of the morning, and Blessing was all I could think about!! My mind and heart had not yet settled. I was desperate to force Blessing out of my thoughts, but to no avail. I imagine this must be what it is like to be a real mom. You have a specific child shaped place in your heart for each of your children, and no matter how desperately you want to sleep or focus on yourself, you can only think about your children. What a beautiful thought! In my 2am slumber, I wrote to Matthew West’s manager. I wrote to David “Chili” Childress, Matthew West’s bass player, who was in charge of the Compassion table at our event, and I wrote to Compassion. Yes, I am obsessive compulsive! I wrote to seek peace in my heart. I needed to know if Blessing had been sponsored. Matthew West’s manager told me that only Compassion could answer my questions, and on May 1 they did. Blessing had not yet been sponsored, but her packet was set to be on display for a huge Compassion Sunday event. I would have to wait for a few more weeks before they could confirm if she had been sponsored at that event. The day of reckoning is June 2! I have been instructed to contact Compassion as soon as possible on June 2. They will know conclusively, at that time, if Blessing has been sponsored, and if she is not, then I can become her sponsor!!
I am beyond anxious! I don’t know what the Lord has in mind. There is a very good chance that Blessing was sponsored at the Compassion Sunday event on May 4. There is also a window of opportunity that she wasn’t sponsored, in which case, I could sponsor her…just $38 a month.
I tell you that, to tell you this…
In the book of Jonah, we learn that God told Jonah to go to Ninevah. Out of fear, as well as a bit of his own selfishness, he went the other way to Tarshish, embarking on a frightening trip overboard. Jonah found himself inside the belly of a great big fish for three days. Needless to say, he was under a great duress, and surely he didn’t sleep much. He also did A LOT of talking to God. Jonah learned the hard way, that when God speaks, you listen!
So, how do we know when God is speaking to us?
If whatever you are “hearing” from God is aligned with what He says in His written Word, the Bible, then, you might could say that God is speaking to you. If it is not, however, aligned with God’s Word, then you must accept it is not God.
I have been doing a lot of talking to God through prayer.
I am still uncertain.
But one thing I do know is this. God encourages us in His Word…
“Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight. Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the LORD and shun evil. This will bring health to your body and nourishment to your bones. Honor the LORD with your wealth, with the first fruits of all your crops; then your barns will be filled to overflowing, and your vats will brim over with new wine.” Proverbs 3:5-10
Hmmm? Now if that doesn’t give me a lot to think about, then I don’t know what does?
Maybe you are struggling with a decision?
Pray for wisdom, strength and guidance!! God will, as He promises, answer your prayers!
Won’t you also join me in praying for God’s will to be done with Blessing?