Sacrifice and obedience, even when it's difficult
By Tricia DeBoer, SIM missionary to Uganda | Uganda in East Africa
Hellen is a single mother of nine children. She works very hard to provide for her children. Every day she sells charcoal in Acholi Quarter in Uganda. Recently, as she was at a community meeting, she was given five kilos of beans and five kilos of maize flour. It was a small gift of support for her, and she was grateful for it as she had no food in her home.
As soon as she returned to her home, Hellen started her charcoal stove to prepare the beans and maize flour. While she was warming up her stove, someone from within the slum stopped by her home. They shared with Hellen how a friend within the slum was not doing very well, had no food, and desperately needed support. Hellen prayed about the need and felt the Lord telling her she needed to give the five kilos of beans and maize to this friend in need.
"No, Hellen!" the people around her said. "If you want to give something, give half. No more than that. After all, you need the food, too."
Yet Hellen felt strongly that the Lord was telling her to give all she had to her friend in need. So she gave the five kilos of beans and the five kilos of maize flour to the friend need.
She returned back to her home wondering how she would now get food for herself and her children.
And this is where the story begins to turn.
Without hearing or knowing the immediate needs of Hellen, our Ugandan partners had received some support that was designated to assist a family in need within the Acholi Quarter. Oscar from our Ugandan partner ministry prayed and asked the Lord whom they should support. The needs within Acholi Quarter are overwhelming, and sometimes its hard to choose one family over another - but the Lord brought Hellen to Oscar's mind. So Oscar went and bought 15 kilos of beans and 15 kilos of maize flour for Hellen and her family.
After purchasing the food, Oscar headed to Helen's home. When he arrived, he found Hellen's charcoal stove ready to cook, but she had no food in her house. When they shared that they wanted to give her 15 kilos of beans and 5 kilos of maize flour, Hellen was amazed! She began to weep. She shared with them how that morning she was given 5 kilos of beans and maize flour because she felt the Lord asking her to do so. She told them how she had literally heard the Lord speak, how she was obedient and how the Lord was blessing her through it.
Hellen's willingness to listen to the Lord and then be obedient was rewarded abundantly! Through this experience we were all reminded of the story of Elijah and the widow. It was a strong reminder to us to listen well and be obedient to whatever the Lord may be asking us to do. No matter how difficult the circumstance the Lord will honor obedience. Be encouraged!
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• Hellen and her family to continue relying on God.
• more Jesus followers to generously care for those with fewer resources.