The day before departing to go to Uganda a man placed $100 into my hand. I asked what the money was for and he said, “You will see an opportunity come up and you will know that this is what the money is for. Use it and bless someone.” I asked for clarification, if there was any specific type of need, any type of person or situation? “Nothing specific, but you will see the need and you will know what to do.” This man had a confidence that God was going to work. “You will know”, is what he said. Realize that there are financial needs everywhere in the developing country of Uganda. To find a need would not be hard, but to know what was the “right” need might be a challenge. Within the first couple of days on the field a strong hard working young man came up to me with a letter. In the letter, which he had gotten someone else to write out in English, he explained how his milk cow had just fallen off of a rocky edge, into a ditch and died. He asked if there was something we could do to help. He is the first born son of his father, but the father wanted a second wife so he married a younger lady. Now with two wives and the younger being more attractive, the first wife and this man were distanced from the new younger wife and the children that were born to her. His dad spent time with the young wife and her children while ignoring his first wife and this first born son. This is very common in the area that we were in, men had multiple wives. In past generations, it was a sign of “prosperity”, that they could support multiple wives. In the many situations of “multiple wives” which I have heard of, they all had favoritism of one wife and her children at the expense of excluding the first wife and children.
Having read the letter from the young man I inquired, what does a cow cost? “Between 500,000 – 600,000 shillings,” was the reply. (That’s $200 – $240 US). I remembered the $100 and asked the team if they would like to invest $10 -$15 each into the young man. Soon the man had a new cow.
My point behind this story is threefold. Firstly – someone anticipated that God would do something and set aside resources in a predetermined way, knowing that there will be an opportunity to bless and minister. Do we take such deliberate efforts to set aside some of our money, time or energy, knowing that Our Lord will bring an opportunity before us, and then we will be able to us this for God’s glory? Secondly, individuals were prepared to partner together to make the project come to completion. There are many things which God sets before us which are too extensive for one person to do by themselves. However, together we can do more than what one person can do on their own. Thirdly, Jesus says that we cannot serve two masters,(Matt 6:34) we will love one and hate the other. Many times the “master” that hovers over our heads is the “need for more”. We want more things, or a nice spouse, etc. so we are unable or unwilling to give to the needs of others. We are unprepared to set aside resources for the opportunities that God might have before us, and then when the opportunities come we are unwilling to release those resources. These resources are too precious to us.
Lord Jesus, You want to bring opportunities before us whereby we can bless and encourage and strengthen others. Give us willing hearts and open our eyes so that we will know when those opportunities are before us and so that we will give of ourselves wholeheartedly into the situations.