GOD’S DAILY PROVISION
Psalm 37:25 (NKJV) Psalm 37:25 (NKJV) “I have been young, and now am old; Yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken, Nor his descendants begging bread.”
This is a well-known verse of scripture and Glyn and I have seen it fulfilled in our lives over and over again. Through-out our years of following the call of God, there has been so many occasions where we had to look to God to meet our daily needs and each time we called on Him for help, He never let us down! Let me share an example with you of God’s unique provision when we were serving Him as missionaries in Africa. This event took place in May of 1971
Our annual conference at Rufaro Mission in Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) had come to a close; the missionary families had left to return to their respective Districts and the last trainload/busloads of African believers had returned to their villages. Glyn and I were finally able to load up and make the journey back to our rented home in the small town of Hartley.
This particular conference had been quite a challenge for me, as it had been my turn to cook the meals for the missionary families that had gathered and I did not consider myself a Master Chef!
Added to that we also had a three month old baby – our first; so I was a brand new mother, learning what it was like caring for an infant under rather primitive living conditions!
I was cooking meals for around 20 people, on the old wood stove that my parents had brought to Rhodesia, when I was but a child. It was amazing that it was still going strong.
I might add that cooking in a rather primitive kitchen over a wood burning stove, in the African heat, gave a whole new meaning to the saying; “If you can’t stand the heat get out of the kitchen”!
A few days after getting back to Hartley I had a very ill husband on my hands. He was running a high fever and was plastered with what appeared to be a bad dose of chicken-pox. I was concerned because of the high fever, so I put a call into Dr. Johan Bower, the only doctor in the small town of Hartley. As soon as he finished his office hours he drove over to our house; (yes, back in the 1970’s a doctor still did make house calls!!).
Concern showed on his face after he had checked Glyn. He took me aside and gravely told me that he was afraid that my husband had contracted Small-pox! He said he needed to call Dr. Mossup, the Government Medical Officer in Gatooma and have him come and give a second opinion.
The next morning both doctors were back at our home trying to come to an agreement on exactly what diagnosis to come up with. Did he have Small-pox or Chicken-pox? Finally they came to the conclusion that he had a bad case of old fashioned “cow-pox”, which he probably contracted from an infected individual at our annual conference we had just returned from.
To err on the side of safety though, Dr. Mossup wanted us to be in quarantine for at least two weeks! I could not even walk to the town for food supplies! It would mean using very creative ideas for meals and praying our canned goods did not run out. Fortunately our milk was delivered to our kitchen doorstep in the early hours each morning, in glass milk bottles, so I knew wouldn’t run out of milk.
Then usually on alternate days, an African delivery man would arrive on a bicycle with a huge grass-woven basket filled with freshly baked bread of various sizes and varieties. His name was “Sixpence”, he always had a big smile and something cheerful to say. In return, to show my appreciation for his faithful deliveries I would give him a large bundle of Chamolia leaves, (Kale), from our garden to take home to his wife to cook with their evening meal. They loved to make a vegetable relish with it, to eat along with their sadza (stodgy porridge made from maize), which was their staple diet. He was always thankful for my simple gesture of friendship. If nothing else I knew we would have fresh bread and milk for the duration of the quarantine time!
The morning following Dr. Mossup’s decision, I heard the happy whistling of Sixpence coming down the lane behind the kitchen. I was waiting for him with a cool cup of water to quench his thirst and then looked into the large basket to select what bread I needed. Looking back now, I have to chuckle. The bread was not wrapped or bagged – just freshly baked loaves sitting in a large grass-woven basket that had a woven lid. How many hands had already touched those loaves was an unknown question! I can just see the modern day Health Department Inspectors screaming foul! Amazingly enough this was the way of life during this era in Rhodesia and none of us died from plague!
Sixpence was chattering away asking how our baby was etc. so I told him how very ill Glyn was. Immediately his face clouded over with concern and he asked how I was going to buy fresh vegetables or meat if I could not leave the house. I assured him that God would take care of us and for him just to continue stopping by to see if I needed bread.
Two days later I heard the familiar whistle and knew Sixpence was on his bread delivery round. I opened the kitchen door to greet him, a beaming face awaited me and in his hands was a bag of assorted fresh vegetables and tied to the back of his bicycle was a rather vocal, cranky chicken!
Happily Sixpence explained that because I had been good to him when his children were hungry, it was now his turn to make sure we did not go hungry!
I was deeply touched and humbled by this unsolicited act of kindness – God had taken care of our need for fresh food by sending us Sixpence, who over time had built up a friendship of trust with us!
This event took place over 47 years ago and I am here to tell you that right up to the writing of this Nugget, God has continued to be faithful to us in supplying our needs as we trusted in His provision. On the many times that we have reached out to Him in faith; His provision has come right when we needed it the most!
It never ceases to amaze me the unique ways that God will use to care for the needs of His Children.
Let me encourage you today ………..
Never think a kindness you do will not be remember and it could well come back to bless you down the road when you least expect it!
Truly we can say with the Psalmist; “I have been young, and now am old; Yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken, Nor his descendants begging bread.”