Well our week is done. The team leaves tomorrow morning, but I will be staying with Tim until Wednesday when we will fly back together. Dima, one of our translators starts college at Fresno State on the 28th. It turns out that we will be traveling together all the way to JFK in New York. Everyone is like, “what a coincidence, who would have thought you would be on the same flight.” I say bahumbug to coincidences and see that God is sovereign and knows best. I do not know why he is on our flight, and maybe I never will. Maybe Dima will learn something from Tim and I. Maybe we will be the ones learning from Dima. Maybe it will just make the transition to a new life that much easier for Dima. Who knows. All I can hope to do is play my small role in the script that was written before I was born and receive the blessings that come with it. Sasha, the man who we are staying with here, has provided me with some things to think about, and part of how I feel about Dima has come from it. As we had our last meal together tonight, Sasha spoke a few words to us, and in that he told a story a preacher had told him.
A man is standing in line at the market behind and old lady. She is buying bread, but is counting her money over and over again. He wonders if he should help her pay for it, but he hesitates, he starts to think about it. He wonders if she has just lost some of her money. Or maybe she has the money but didn’t bring enough. Maybe she is just having trouble counting because she is so old. He continues to think, and eventually he thinks long enough to get back to his original thought of maybe he should help her pay for it. Just as he is thinking it, a young man comes and helps her pay for her bread and she is overwhelmingly grateful. What Sasha said next will stay with me for a while. He explained how if the man had just thought quickly and done what he knew he should do, he would have had the blessing and the honor of helping this old lady. Instead he thought about it instead of acting, and his opportunity passed. The other young man received the blessing of helping her. When we do deeds of service, we are being a blessing in someone else’s life, but our lives also receive a blessing.
That old lady got what she needed to get, and that is what mattered the most. But it doesn’t always work that way. What if we act too late? What if we assume that someone else will help so we won’t have to? How many people will miss out because we hesitated? Sure we eventually got around to helping someone, or someone else eventually did it, but what about the period of time that is not accounted for? How much more could have been done? It makes me wonder how many times that I have sat with someone or added prayer requests to a list or heard prayer requests from others for a need and prayed that someone would meet that need, when in reality I can meet that need for them. Instead of praying for someone to be an answered prayer, what if we started becoming that answered prayer when possible? How much more could we accomplish for the kingdom of God? I am thankful for Sweet Sleep and Jen and all those who do work over here. God is using them to answer prayers and lives in Moldova and are being blessed as well as their own lives.
This has been a valuable lesson to learn. I hope that I will seize those moments to bless others and that I will receive the blessings that are intended for me through those moments if only I am aware enough to grasp them. Others are seizing those moments and Moldova is different because of it.