God often works in ways you least expect. As a part of RAM, we had bible studies every morning and before we’d start our discussion we’d all go around and say where we saw God the day before. Through this, we’d always be searching for an opportunity where we saw God working. A majority of the time it was through interaction with the community, and often where we least expected it. As my friend Wesley stated in his blog post titled, “The Right Thing to Do,” he got to pray with a man whom he met through door knocking for VBS, who lost his wife very recently. God was also working through us in door knocking by blessing older folks with someone to talk with, leading us to people who had stopped attending church, meeting people who were in search of a congregation; among many more experiences.
God also does not work on our watch. Often I get so busy and caught up with my own schedule, I forget I should be still and listen for God to direct me. During my time in Cordell, I was picking up and dropping off a girl for VBS. A few times during the week we’d go to Sonic and order a drink. The first day we went to Sonic they were taking FOREVER to bring out our order. I was getting a bit frustrated inside because I thought I needed to hurry and get back to the church building, but God had something different in mind. The girl was enjoying her time hanging out in my car and noticed a bible story book in the backseat of my car. I started reading it to her and then I realized this was far more important than my plans. Even after our Sonic order was delivered, I finished the chapter of the story and then went on our way. In this moment God taught me to be still and be mindful of situations He has put before me.
Finally, a third lesson He taught me was that forming relationships is more than just asking someone how they are doing. I’m sure I can say this for all of the RAM students; we were very blessed to have such hospitable and kind host families!
There is much I love about each one of them, but most of all they taught me about building relationships. I have a hard time knowing what to say to new acquaintances, but they made it seem so easy each time we met a new host family. Towards the end of RAM I figured it out! It’s about investing time with people, which reminds me of another door knocking story. I was walking up to a house I didn’t really want to go to. It was an older house. There were heat-stricken kittens laying on the porch, and lots of flies buzzing around. With hesitation I knocked and a lady answered. I told her about VBS and wondered if she had any grandchildren in the area or knew any kids. At first she was closed up and said no. Somehow we started talking about her kittens and ideas of how to prevent the flies from coming around, and she asked again what I was advertising, with interest now. I told her again about VBS, she accepted a flyer and kindly stated she did have some grandchildren fairly close by that she could relay the message too. This was another way God showed me He was working and how taking your time with someone can change how they hear your message.
I have been so blessed by working with the people of rural America, and my journey in faith has been corrected to walking by God’s side, not on my own. I plan to stay connected with these communities and bring others to recognize the need for workers in God’s kingdom of rural America.