“When you go, more will come.”
These words brushed against my spirit as I gazed out my bathroom window over three years ago. My posture seemed outwardly relaxed. It should have been an average moment of reflection as I finished washing my hands. But my heart was in turmoil, my thoughts running through scenarios and worries like they had been for months.
We were about to let go of so much. I couldn’t even comprehend the distance from loved ones that would take place when we moved to Iceland from Alabama. My heart couldn’t go there yet. But as I let my eyes roam over the backyard of the house that my kids loved and that we had just moved into, I couldn’t help but wonder and worry.
How would God take care of us in Iceland? How would we have what we needed to live in one of the most expensive countries in the world? We knew we were called by God and that the time was right to move to my husband’s country of birth. But in our present situation, we could barely make ends meet most months.
I didn’t want a life of financial struggle for my kids. I’d been there and done that in my own childhood. Yet we were in a season of our faith being tested. I was scrambling to figure out every detail, to find a way to alleviate the fear that was creeping in.
“When you go, more will come.”
When God’s whisper broke through, like sun beams piercing dark clouds, I felt the warmth of His words hit my core. This wasn’t just a fleeting thought or momentary appeasement. It wasn’t even a step by step process that would lead to every solution that I craved.
His words were the provision that I never knew I needed. The promise that not only was He going to take care of us as we stepped out in faith, but He was providing a way for me to practice my trust in Him.
That was the source of my fear. My lack of trust. God’s words pointed to the lies I was starting to let invade my senses again. The lies that said I couldn’t trust the Lord, that He was leading us out to leave us. Lies that my children would pay the price for our obedience. That my God ultimately wasn’t a good Father and this move could lead to our destruction.
But the Lord’s words, laced with His perfect love, were a balm, soothing my doubts and stirring up courage to believe. It was an invitation to go on an adventure with Him and see Him provide the life in abundance that He promises.
The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.
—John 10:10 NKJV
This is the area our faith is stretched the most. Many times it’s easier to believe more in the destruction than in the abundance. And many of us that work in our global, cross-cultural contexts have seen the horrific work and remains of the enemy first hand. We wrestle with the lack of provision for people around us while we ourselves are often at a deficit.
The needs we see go further than even finances and resources. We see stolen hope and passion, the death of dreams and the destruction of relationships. Yet even as our eyes look over the places of loss, we can be reminded that our Savior is well acquainted with what we wrestle with. He gave up so much in order to gain us, to bring reconciliation and redemption. He himself being the provision that we needed.
Jesus ventured into dark and desolate places so that more could come and become of us. It is that intentionality that we can be reminded of. That we are meant to have access to that type of abundance, whatever it looks like.
Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.
—Galatians 6:9 NIV
Maybe that provision will come as we plant our gifts and talents in foreign soil and hard seasons, believing that the Lord will bring harvest out of our obedience. Or it may simply be having something to plant. As we learned in the Velvet Ashes Unplugged retreat, maybe it’s just saying, “Here we are, send us, plant us, use us as the provision we are praying for”. And we will trust that out of the overflow of surrender, the Lord will bring so much more.
Perhaps the Lord will even give you creative ideas for provision beyond the usual fundraising and support. This season that we are in may be a good time to stir up some of that gifts you’ve been given that can be turned into monetary streams, right from the convenience of your computer. And as you plant these seeds of creativity, fruit that helps sustain you and your family can begin to sprout.
As you pray and go and grow where you are, may more from the Lord come for you and the people you serve.
What does the need for provision look like for you? Is it just monetary? Are you praying for abundance in a specific area?
Depending on the organization you are partnered with, is there an approved and creative way to develop alternate streams of income that help support your work?