Oh, the places we'll go...
I knew God would have to be very creative to build this school through us, and one of the best parts of this journey so far has been watching to see how He'll show up.
Our bathroom faucets had been leaking a while, and our bathtub wall surround had cracked and was in need of replacement. We knew that we would face much bigger issues if we didn't address the situation, so 5 or 6 weeks ago, my husband began the demolition phase of the project.
When it came time to remove the faucets, he discovered that he wasn't able to remove it on his own. While he's quite handy with most things, plumbing isn't something he's completely comfortable with.
After several weeks of having the bathroom all torn up, I started putting some pressure on him to call someone to get the work completed, only to be stood up twice by the person he contacted.
My husband threw his hands in the air, discouraged.
I threw my hands up in the air, in prayer. I prayed for God to send us someone reliable and affordable, for God to use this as an opportunity for my husband to see God's provisions, and kept praying that the disruption of having a construction zone in the house wouldn't begin to grate on my patience.
Meanwhile, completely unrelated to this (ha!), my mom called to share the news that she had won a new BBQ at a church fundraiser. I was excited for her, but couldn't quite grasp why she was SO excited:
1. She's vegan. (Yes, I know people grill veggies and even fruits... but she's into raw vegan food. As in, spinach and peach shakes, or something. (I love you mom!)
2. She recently moved to an apartment and does not have a yard.
3. She's, uhm, not the outdoor grilling type. ;)
She then explained that even though no one in our family was in need of a BBQ either, she still wanted it to be a blessing to someone, so she decided to donate it to our Ghana travel expenses. All we had to do was pick it up at the church.
Except we don't have a truck.
Saturday evening, mom called to tell me that her friend Mike was bringing the BBQ to our house. PTL! I eagerly greeted them in the driveway as they pulled up. The BBQ was beautiful, and huge!
Then, the questions came to mind... Where exactly would I store this while waiting to sell it? Would people still be in the market for a BBQ so late in the season? With all the BBQs on clearance now, would I get good value for it?
As Mike and I were putting the BBQ away, we stopped and chatted a bit. He asked about the school in Africa and what we'd do with the BBQ. As I shared, you could tell he was very captivated and totally getting the heart of the mission. He mentioned his journey as a Christian and in passing, mentioned the Wesleyan church. I asked him where he attends... turns out he attends the same church I do! We had a great laugh about that!! We shared stories about the church and promised to look for each other on Sunday mornings.
He said he wished he could purchase the BBQ, he really liked it and wanted to help, but at 65, he was close to retirement and watching his finances carefully. I understood and told him that God would match us up with the person who was meant to have the BBQ, that it would all work out. (Ha!)
I asked him what his profession was, and he explained that he was a contractor. I listened as he told me about his latest project, his passion for quality work and attention to detail shining through-- and the more I listened, the more the wheels turned...
You can guess the way the conversation went!
"So, how are you with plumbing?"
"Do you do private/residential work?"
"Please, come inside the house for a moment, (and don't be alarmed to find 6 or 7 teenagers inside, they're mostly tame), I have something to show you..."
In the end, we made a deal, and I made a new friend. The value of the labor and work that needed to be done was similar to what we would have received for the BBQ. Mike gets to take home the BBQ, we get to have the bathroom work done by a wonderful and hardworking man who is reliable and has an amazing walk with Christ, and in return, we will donate the value of his work directly to the travel fund.
It's times like this, when I look at the 81 days left before our departure and the never ending list of fundraising tasks that I am reminded that God already has it all under control and that even when it seems that nothing is happening, He never rests.
The same applies to your life -- even when things don't seem to be happening, He never rests, and His perfect plan WILL unfold.
All He asks of us is to believe, have faith, and do this for His glory.