Times of Testing

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The cold wind whipped through our clothes as snow swirled around our bodies. My siblings and I shivered in the field as we gleaned the last bits of milo the combine had missed. It was a bad year for the farm, and we needed every bit of grain possible to sustain our sheep through the winter. It was a time of testing for my family. But God stretched that grain through the winter and got us through. Another year, my father told me we would need to get rid of my dog, Dynamo, because he was “eating us out of house and home.” Then Dynamo won a contest put on by a dog food company and earned free dog food for a year. Again, God provided. Still another time, a friend lost her glasses in the Missouri River, and a frantic search came up empty. She could not afford new ones. We prayed, and after saying “amen,” my friend reached down into the slimy mud, and there were her glasses!

All of these were times of testing where God providentially provided a way out. As a girl and young woman, those experiences built my faith enough for me to realize that when God didn’t answer prayer in the way I asked, He still was working for my ultimate good. I didn’t understand why, a couple of years later, God allowed Dynamo to die a miserable death, or why He allowed our family to lose three cars in a six-month period. But I knew that He would get us through. He would sustain us. He would be there, carrying us if necessary. Sometimes the waiting is difficult.

Psalms 27:13-14 says, “I would have lost heart, unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living. Wait on the LORD; be of good courage. And He shall strengthen your heart; Wait, I say on the LORD!” What an incredible promise. God will strengthen your heart. Wait for it!

When Satan tries to plant fear and turmoil in your heart, listen to the counsel Jesus gives: “Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” We have a choice. Satan may plant fear and turmoil, but we can choose to not let it grow in us. Instead, we can receive peace. “Peace I leave you with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you.” What an incredible gift during times of uncertainty!

This is what we can offer to the unreached of the world—the strength of heart and the peace that comes from knowing Jesus Christ as our Lord and savior.

Thank you for making our ministry possible while there is still time. God will sustain His work until it accomplishes His purpose!

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