BY: Justin Henry
E-MAIL ADDRESS: firstname.lastname@example.org
BIBLE TEXT: Ecclesiastes 3:14 — “And I know that whatever God does is final. Nothing can be added to it or taken from it. God’s purpose is that people should fear him.”
PERSONAL REFLECTION: While in Romania, we had the opportunity to go to the mountains for a few days of rest and reflection with the orphan girls from the Beauty from Ashes Center, as well as most of the staff. There were 20 of us when you include all of the kids. Upon arrival at the “cabin” where we would stay, we noticed several things of concern: there were not enough beds, the oven did not work, and the microwave only worked sporadically. Since it was winter, the beds were a slight concern, but trying to cook for 20 people with no oven or microwave was an even bigger concern. I know how I would have reacted if I were in the States, and it wouldn’t have been pretty. Our hosts were safe since I still didn’t speak enough Romanian to express my true thoughts. That was fortunate for me because on the second day of our trip, we discovered that our hosts had lost their son unexpectedly a few months before our arrival and had been in a deep depression since then. In fact, they did not want to rent the house to us and had turned other people down, but “something” told her to rent it to us.
During our visit, to a remote part of Romania while on “vacation,” we had the opportunity to pray for this woman and her family. The angels rejoiced as another soul’s name was written in the Book of Life! And all it cost was the inconvenience of not having an oven!
PERSONAL APPLICATION: I love the book of Ecclesiastes! Anyone who spends any time around me will hear me mention, “That’s Ecclesiastes!” several times a day. Finally, I have a chance to share that thought in a more public setting! Many verses would have worked for this story, but this one is the most powerful. When we are going through any kind of trial, we often wonder why. Sometimes we don’t even see things as trials, just irritations. I learned many lessons through this event – like the way I react to a situation can have eternal consequences – but the biggest lesson was that God really is in control. He has a plan, and it is perfect. Sometimes He gives us a glimpse of His plan, like He did for us with this lady, but many times we just have to trust Him. Rest assured that God has a plan – and you are a part of it!
PRAYER: Lord, thank you for the opportunities you present us with to be a part of Your good and perfect plan. Help us to continually remember that You are always at work, even when we don’t see it. Thank you so much for saving me and allowing me to serve and forgive me when I blow it. In Jesus name, Amen.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
On a mission’s trip to Bolivia several years ago, Justin was broken for the people of God in a way that can only happen on such a trip. After that experience, and several like it, Justin began seeking God’s will more intensely and it has led him to begin the process of entering the mission’s field full-time. Until that time comes, he continues to operate Henry Brothers, a roofing and construction business.