Dump children and so on…
Paul meant a lot to many people. Just think what he is still doing for us hanging on his every word nearly 2 000 years later. And although he was in jail then, he knew he still had a lot to do. 25So I plan to be around a while, companion to you as your growth and joy in this life of trusting God continues.
Actually, this is the role each of us has to play. We are commanded to make a difference wherever we live, work and play. And fortunately many people do it, like the retired principal living in a retirement village along the coast:
I told you about the vegetable garden that Wimpie and I started at the Primary School. This meant the school could provide the children with five lunches instead of three per week. Wimpie grew the plants and donated them to the school – the Lord provides.
Someone asked me to help with the eight children staying at the refuse dump. I made a plan: Every second Wednesday I took them fishing in the river. I had to get a fishing permit for each of them. An organization in the village heard about it and paid for the permits – the Lord provides.
Each needed a fishing rod and reel. Some of my friends helped and each got a fishing rod – the Lord provides.
This year, I have money for the permits, and something to eat and drink for each child every second Wednesday. Sometimes my wife spoils them with a treat.
The old-age home invited me to come and tell them during Bible study what I do (the vegetable garden, Monday prayer meeting at two primary schools, audio Bible action, fishing group, Valuable for Christ Action). Right there they gave me a donation so that I can continue – the Lord provides!
Five of the eight boys are back in school (12 to 15 years old).
More and bigger things are now happening in our town. We’ll tell you more when you visit again.
Can you see how Tienie’s letter bears witness to his experience of God in his daily life? That is definitely so – God provides. But what is even more remarkable to me, is how much he does: “the vegetable garden, Monday prayer meeting at two primary schools, audio Bible action, fishing group, Valuable for Christ Action”. So many people receive something because Tienie is obedient.
Just like Paul’s work on earth wasn’t finished yet, Tienie’s work has not been completed. There are still too many people who depend on his actions. Some faith still needs to be fed. Some schools still need to provide extra lunches. Some still need to hear and see the message of the Bible. Some still have to find their value in Christ. And three refuse dump boys still have to go back to school.
I get goose bumps!
How long do I still need to stay to finish my work?
Are you irreplaceable?
Do you have to live a bit longer to finish your task?
What do you do to make a difference?
Lord, I am saved through your grace. Therefore, I want to do something in your New World. I have to. Please help me recognize the places where You want to use me. Please give me the strength and perseverance to do the work willingly and well. Amen