Volume 4 Number 2
An Enriching Experience

01 February 1991

Tensions, doubts and questions ravaged my mind. `How does God give one an assignment without the tools to accomplish it?'
A friend and I were recently invited to Zimbabwe from Nigeria to participate in a youth conference on how to foster spiritual commitment. We would then go on to meet other young people throughout the country. Included in the after-conference activities was a `youth camp' on a farm. The serenity of this place, according to the Zimbabwean friend who had invited us, would help us `dig into ourselves', as a preparation for meeting and sharing experiences with students at a college of education.

It was a week to the camp, and preparations were in top gear. One morning, during a time of quiet, came this sledgehammer thought: `Contribute financially to help in carrying this camp.' It was clear. I wrote it down for writing's sake.

As far as I was concerned, the thought was impossible if not downright outrageous. True, in the last discussion about the camp we had all agreed that we needed to contribute a certain amount if it was to take place; but where on earth was I, a guest and voluntary worker, to get the money from? Friends had sacrificed to buy our plane tickets from Nigeria, and here in Zimbabwe, our generous host and hostess were taking care of us. I had no ready cash.

I had the same thought the following morning. I became highly worried.
Tensions, doubts and questions ravaged my mind. `How does God give one an assignment without the tools to accomplish it?' I asked myself. In this web of confusion, I decided to tell the thought to the friend who had come with me. In the end we both concluded that if it was God's will, he would do the providing. I went hesitantly to my room and prayed, although I still could not understand why this thought had suddenly become compelling for me.

Two days before the camp, we were invited by an old friend to his house for supper. Bidding us good night, he pushed something into our hands. On opening them, what did we find? Wow! Exactly the amount of money we needed as our contribution to the camp. My friend and I looked at each other and laughed; and when we got back to our lodgings we quickly handed it over.

Since this incident, the saying `Where God guides, he provides' has come to assume a deeper meaning for me, enriching my faith in the process. Gradually it has dawned on me that sometimes, in my shortsightedness, I don't trust enough. I sometimes allow seemingly inhibiting circumstances to create a kind of Berlin Wall between me and God.

Throughout the years I have observed that God comes to us in our deepest need, despite our human frailties. He comes to us when we are at our wits' end, flailing in a sea of helplessness. I have also come to discover that the way I live my life can be a sign of how much I appreciate God's unparalleled care; and this brings me to seek his guidance in all my daily activities.

To allow the liberating rays of the First Cause to radiate in me means that I have to put out my little candle conceptions, prejudices, hatred and intellectual snobbishness.

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