Recently I shared on RAM’s Facebook page some of Isabella’s story and how God brought her to rural America and orchestrated for her a special ministry to the Spanish-speaking community of Carnegie, OK. Today, I want to briefly share another part of that story. It is Lila’s story.
Lila is the lady on the left. She grew up in Carnegie, moved away for 20 years, and a few months ago moved back. I had the privilege of visiting with her in her living room this past weekend. She is part of Isabella’s story because without Lila, I’m not sure that Isabella would be in Carnegie right now.
Isabella needed a place to stay while she was working in Carnegie this summer. She did not have a car or driver’s license and so we needed a place near to the town library and main street where she would be offering English lessons. We were coming up short on finding such a place until Lila stepped up and met the need. After spending just a few minutes with Lila I discovered why Lila was the one to meet our need.
Last Saturday when we dropped off Isabella, Lila shared with me some of her life experiences before moving back to Carnegie; her serving meals to the poor and less fortunate in her previous community and the satisfaction and pure pleasure she gained from it. She told of how it started by bringing meals to a few townspeople in an empty lot in town. It eventually grew to several people and soon moved into a fellowship hall of a nearby church building. Lila was actively involved the entire time. I commented on her involvement and what she said in response has stuck with me since, “I’m a follower.”
What she meant was that she was not one to step in and take charge, but was always ready to help. What her comment brought to the forefront of my mind was that her readiness to serve and give was indicative of “a follower” of Jesus. Yes, Lila was a follower indeed; a follower of the One who came “not to be served, but to serve and give his life as a ransom for many.”
God never ceases to amaze me how He works out the details of the opportunities He presents to us to do His will in this messed up, needy world. Carnegie needed someone to teach English to its Spanish-speaking residents. The church in Carnegie needed to find a need to meet that could open more doors to share Jesus’ truth and grace. God brought them Isabella. Isabella needed a home where she could stay while teaching English. God brought us Lila who opened her home to Isabella. Every “need” in our world becomes an “opportunity” in the Kingdom of God because God’s people are “followers” – of His servant heart, always ready to give at every opportunity! Follow God – serve others, watch the world change!