As they were coming down the steep, dusty hill; it was obvious that they had been walking for a while. Both of them dripping with sweat, the man who appeared to be a father looking very concerned and the child looking deathly ill.
He didn’t know where he was headed; but his son was sick and he needed help that the village could not offer.
Our team quickly ushered the father over, and a translator explained to him that this was a free medical clinic set up by an American team. Relief did not immediately enter the man’s gaze; as his son was very sick and that was his primary concern.
The child had malaria. If he had not received medical attention within a few hours, he most likely would have died.
The father, having no idea where help would be or when it would come, left his village early that morning and had walked nine hours searching for help.
And a group of Americans, equipped to care for his son, was waiting at a far-off village.
He had absolutely no idea before he set off on his journey that help was going to find him.
He just knew he could not sit back and watch his son die.
I often think about this child, about this father and his determined, fierce love for his son; about the faith required to just keep walking- your lethargic, moaning, near-death child like dead weight on your back- your only motivation being that you would rather attempt to find help instead of just sitting back and watching him suffer.
“He determines the number of stars; he gives to all of them their name.”- Psalm 147:4
I should not be surprised by the “coincidental” timing and placing of this father/son prayer. After all, our God is the Creator and Sustainer of all things; if He numbers the stars and knows all of their names, surely He can ordain and purpose each event that occurs in each of our lives.
He cares about His children more than we could possibly know.
We were so humbled to be featured on the local news recently; and so grateful that God’s story is touching and reaching the community and world around us.
Many of you have reached out with conversations of different therapy, various medical treatments, new testing- and for your intentions, we are sincerely grateful!
However, my prayer in all this is that you would not miss the very center of this story:
In each and every detail of the way He created Ally and Bailey Grace.
All Him and the image He desired.
Perfectly formed in His loving and good hand.
Long-time readers know this, but to reiterate it those of your who are just now entering into our story:
Hugh and I are not “good people” who are making the best out of a hard situation.
Hugh and I are sinful people, weak in our flesh, who serve a God whose plans are good and ways are perfect, even when they don’t make sense to man.
“As for God, His way is perfect; the word of the Lord proves true; He is a shield for all those who take refuge in Him.”- Psalm 18:30
At all times.
In all things.
In all ways.
A perfect and true Shield in each of our lives- allowing that which brings good and prohibiting that which hinders His ultimate plan.
Beautifully sovereign in every way.
I am sure that there were many in that village that day who had children who did not receive healing. Babies who died from starvation, from illness, from dehydration. Yet- if we fix our eyes on this, we have missed the point. His plans and His ways are mysterious and so other. We are not to know why He makes the choices He does, we are simply called to sit back in faith and awe; to trust the One who puts the very breath we breathe into our lungs. The decisions are His; we need only believe He is good in them all. Not easy- but worth it. Not normal to the world around us- but the only way to true joy and peace.
The God who formed the seas is able to do all things.
It is not in our hands to determine whether or not the God of the universe is right in His decision-making.
We are His sheep, the children of His pasture.
But hear me when I say this: the same God that sent His one and only Son to die a death He did not deserve so that you could live with Him forever- the God who dismisses your sin in order for you to know His love- His heart and His intentions can be trusted in anything you are walking through today.
My prayer for you today, dear reader, is that you would find peace in the plans He is writing for your life.
That, as I often say, you would trust Him with the story. Believe that the details He is scripting are good and beautiful, even, when they appear blurry and muddled.
May we know that the God in heaven has a fiercer love for His children than that father in Bangladesh who was motivated to carry his son miles and miles in order to find healing and help.
Nothing can stop His love for you.
All things can be trusted in the Hand of our loving and perfect Father.
All is grace.
And when we can’t find His Handprint, may we trust His heart.
Let’s worship the God of the nations today.
He is worthy.
“Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? … No, in all these things we are conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”- Romans 8:35, 37-39