Psalms of a Middle Aged Woman
3/26/13 at 12:45 PM 0 Comments

Paying The Bill

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Trips to Africa don't come along every day. I have been twice blessed after two mission trips to Ukraine. They were life changing. I have always wanted to go to Africa. Wanted...but didn't really believe I would have that kind of opportunity. When my husband, Stacy was asked to go to Nigeria, he very lovingly made it clear that we would be going together. It is his talent as a videographer and his generous gifts that made this trip possible, but I needed to find a way to pay for my wings across the Atlantic. We don't have that kind of money, especially in the short amount of time we were given to raise it. One might think that five months is plenty of time to prepare for an overseas trip. However, airfare must be paid for long in advance, and we were down to two months. We prayed. I prayed. I asked for prayer. I REALLY hate asking people for money and sometimes, they just don't have it to give. I would often hear, " all I can do is pray for you." When people tell me, "I'm so sorry, all I can do is pray", I tell them, "that's like telling me, 'I'm going into battle and all I have to take is this nuclear warhead."

I needed time to think so I took our dog, Molly, out for a walk. It was one of those amazing autumn evenings where it's just as it should be: crisp, golden, still warm enough to walk without a jacket, and quiet. I used that quiet time to chat with God. He's that kind, loving, Fatherly friend I can be completely honest with. I'm not embarrassed to tell Him that we don't have the money to pay for my ticket. There's no shame in setting my concerns at His feet and saying, " I can't do this one on my own." I just laid it all out there.

The next day I came home from work and was met in the hallway by my husband. He had good news ! The company that was sending him and paying for his trip was offering to pay the first installment for me. I was overjoyed and together we thanked God for His blessing.

The Sunday following my evening walk, I went down front after worship and waited in line for prayer. There is often a wait for an available prayer team. So I waited. I was assured that the next available team would be with me and within a few minutes I was standing with two women, explaining my need for financial help. The most amazing thing happened ! One of the women took my hands in hers, smiled, and told me she was from Nigeria. Eight thousand people in that church and I was taken to a native of the very place I wanted to go ! We laughed together and she said, " Eef there's one theeng you shood know, eet's thees: Eef eet eez Heez weel, eet eez Heez beel!!" (For those of you who don't speak English with a French accent, that translates to " If it is His will, it is His bill!" We laughed, hugged, prayed, laughed some more and I left with a genuine smile and full heart.

Hours later, I was sitting at the computer, asking for advice from those who had already traveled down this path. What do I need to take ? How do I raise the money? How many vaccinations do I REALLY have to get?? I didn't even get to respond to the few people who had replied to my post when my husband walked in the room and handed me the phone. He didn't say a word. Confused I said hello and made small talk with a man I had met only twice. The caller went on to tell me that my entire trip was going to be paid for by his company. Yes, the entire bill!

I am reminded by this story that the truth of Resurrection Sunday was that our bill was paid. The wages of sin being death, we have been set free from this eternal payment; trying to "earn" our way to Heaven. God loved His beloved so much that He sent His one and only Son to die so that we would inherit an eternal home. He loved His children so much that He took our huge debt and wrote "paid in full" on the reciept.

Thanks Lord,for paying the bill. Again.

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