Thursday, April 4, 2013

Helping Lydia

I wasn't going to share this story, but I think it's such a blessing when God answers specific prayers. One of the reasons I like to find deals is so I can have more money to help others. BUT THERE ARE SO MANY NEEDS. It can be overwhelming. A few weeks ago, I started praying that God would show me a very specific new believer who needed help with a business start up. I didn't want just some nameless person in an organization this time (not that this is a bad thing, and I certainly support good organizations), I wanted a real flesh and blood person that I knew would be directly impacted and that this money would not only be a big faith boost for them, but would change the course of their life for the better. God says we have not because we ask not, that we should not ask with selfish motives and that we should not doubt when we ask for wisdom. Never underestimate the power of His word.

After praying this specific prayer, I sat with my Bible, sipping my coffee and knowing He would answer. A few hours later, I was checking facebook, and I saw the post of a friend I had met on the mission field in Colombia in 1989 and who now lives in Nairobi. This is her neighborhood:

 Her family helps women, orphans and widows find dignity through work and Bible Study. This particular morning, she posted a very specific need of an 18 year old named Lydia:

Lydia was forced to leave school at 16 because of lack of money, and in desperation, she chose to go with an older man who promised to help her with school. But he didn't. He "married" her,  but was a drunkard who kept her as a "mistress" in a Nairobi slum. Soon after her baby, named Blessed, was born, he tried to kill them both.

But Lydia escaped with help from a neighbor and made it to her Aunt's home. There she met my friend Camie. Lydia has been faithful in attending Bible Study every week for a year. She had a job working 12 hour days, 6 days a week for about 3 USD a day, barely enough to feed her and her baby, but she never complained. And she had a dream, a dream to go to beauty school and start her own business. And this is when I heard the story and Camie's plea for help.

This is Lydia and my friend Camie on the day she enrolled in beauty school:

I haven't seen Camie for over 2 decades, and only recently "found" her on facebook. Don't be afraid to pray specific prayers. God delights in using us to help others; we are His hands and feet. And all that time it took to save half on my plane tickets home this summer? It was the amount Lydia needed, and I think she would say it was worth my time. Camie said she recently shared her testimony in church and said that she has never been happier in her life. I think God answered more than one prayer!!

Have you seen God answer a specific prayer? Share your story, and bless other people!