Saturday, August 21, 2010

Surprised By God

“…encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact, you are doing.” (1Thessalonians 5:11 NIV)

The local public school system employed Vileena as a reading teacher in a phone interview just four days before school opened. Two days later, she arrived in Baltimore from her home on the island of Antigua. The school assigned Vileena along with eight other new teachers as my mentees.

She needed somewhere to live until she had a paycheck. Alone in a large house, I offered Vileena temporary shelter. I thought this would be a great opportunity to witness.
We drove to school together on the first day. Sure of myself, I said, “You know, I usually pray on the way to work.”

She looked at me excitedly. “So do I.”

“I pray out loud,” I said.

“Me too,” she said.

I looked at her sideways. “Sometimes I sing,” I said.

“Me too. Do you know His 'Name Is Wonderful?'" she said.

I shook my head yes and she began to sing in a rich soprano voice with a lovely island accent. I joined in with my reedy delivery. Thus began our year together.

I taught Vileena about the expectations of the school system. She taught me about exciting moves of God on her island home. I taught her some tricks of teaching reading. She taught me about herbs, natural remedies and healthy Antigua cooking. We prayed, worshiped, and witnessed together.

Alone at the time, with new jobs, we both needed Godly support and our Heavenly Father provided it. We were both surprised by God's provision.

Dear Lord, thank you for the surprises you send us and for the wonder that comes with the sweet fellowship of believers.

Christena Struben © 2010

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