“I’m not enough”. Do those words resonate with you? So often this is the filter I run everything through and determine I probably can’t be used by God. At the end of the day, sometimes before the day even starts, I have only a few crumbs of bread to feed all the people who cross my path. But as I’ve learned recently, God only needs a little bit from us to feed the 5000 and more.
I was asked to go with my church to El Salvador on a Compassion International Mission Experience. I’ve had a couple of other opportunities this year to travel outside of the country, so I was willing to give someone else a chance to go. My friends are very persistent and persuasive, and soon I found myself sitting in a mission trip planning meeting listening to all the passionate responses to “Why are you going to El Salvador.” I had nothing. I really didn’t know why. Thinking maybe if I sponsored a child in the area we’d be visiting, I’d have a chance to meet him, and batta-boom I’d have a good reason. To be perfectly honest, I was still a little “meh” about the whole thing. I’m a divorced mom with two boys, I have a full-time job at MOPS International, I’m a coordinator for a MOMSNext group and as a mom you understand this, “other duties as assigned”. The thought of raising money, taking more time away from my job, putting my boys through another week of international travel frankly overwhelmed me. Admittedly, I might have even prayed God would throw up some road blocks because I didn’t have a lot leftover to offer these people who needed so much. I walked onto the plane with less than a few crumbs.
Once we arrived, God was working behind the scenes to bless me with a visit to my sponsored child’s home. My prayer that morning “God, I have so little to offer Daniel and his family. I don’t know Spanish, I only have a few gifts, and I will be here such a short time. Lord, take what I can give in encouragement and multiply it for a lifetime”. I toured his home, met his family and was immediately overwhelmed by seeing him in real life. His cinderblock home has two rooms with four beds to sleep 9 family members. The outdoor kitchen featured a flat surface heated by a wood fire to make tamales. They have no running water in their home so they walk up the hill 30 times every couple of days to fill enough bowls and buckets of water for drinking, cooking and bathing. They “showered” in a small cinderblock space with a waist-high bucket to catch the water they poured over themselves to get clean. Can you imagine, every time you turn on the faucet that’s a trip up the hill for them. What difference could I possibly make living an entire country away, with the few crumbs in my hand?
Before I left, my boys and I ran through the store stuffing fun things in a backpack (and much to my boys dismay, practical things too) for Daniel to have. As I handed Daniel his backpack, I prayed, “Dear God, please let this be enough, as it’s all I have to give.” One by one as he pulled out his gifts he beamed. Sisters, his smile lights up the world!
“Uh oh, what have I done?” I thought.
“You have just changed Daniel’s life forever, I have never seen that look on Daniel’s face.”
Then Daniel’s mom said to me “I don’t know how you knew exactly what he needed. I don’t know how my prayers went from my lips, to God to you. How did you know??”
The life changing item? A package of underwear. She’d been praying for underwear for her son because he doesn’t have any. Okay, so the underwear itself won’t change Daniel’s life, but the hope, knowing that God answers prayers – now that’s a life changer!
Okay, I know what you are thinking. Great story, but it’s just a story. I’ll never get an opportunity to do something overseas. I’m a mom of little ones. I don’t have a lot of money. I work full-time. I’m not enough… Ladies, let me encourage you, whatever your reason might be, you can go on a mission trip! I’ve cited all of those same reasons to not answer God’s call. BUT, you don’t need a mission trip or even more than a few crumbs to make a difference.
Go to your refrigerator. You heard me, walk over to your fridge and look inside. What do you have? Some cheese, maybe a couple of apples? What about some crackers and peanut butter. Okay, cut it all up, put it on a plate and invite someone over for coffee. There. Now you’ve done it. You’ve been used by God to make a change in her life forever. When we step out in faith and offer up to God what we have, you are answering a hope giving prayer.
By the way – I have an opportunity to give away a MOPS International One Year Membership to one lucky reader! Leave a comment below telling me how you will offer up your leftover crumbs to God for a chance to win this random drawing!