Monday, October 14, 2013

Neighbors, God, and Groceries

God's provision is a beautiful thing.

Today I took one of my students to the grocery store so we could pick up some food for her family. We had gotten to know each other better over the retreat weekend, and when she expressed the need I knew I had the funds and ability to take care of it. I thought of it as relief aid, but at the same time asked her to come work at the Kennel tomorrow in exchange for the groceries, for a wise professor once told me that "to be nothing but a recipient of services denies someone of their humanity" (Jude Tiersma-Watson). So this morning I got up and ready and went to walk out the door to pick her up for our adventure.

As I opened the door I was surprised to find that there was a box of food lying on our porch waiting for me. I couldn't believe my eyes, because the one day I was going to go provide food for one of my students was the one day that a random neighbor decided to leave a box of groceries on our porch.

This is not something that has ever happened to us before, someone leaving food on our porch. There was no name on the box, simply a note that said "Here are some leftover groceries. We hope you can use them." It turns out that it was probably one of our neighbors who was leaving Pinetop for the winter, but we don't even know the people who live around us. What adds to the crazy is that most of our neighbors do not know what we do on the reservation, they have simply noticed that we live here year round. There was no way that anyone could have known I was going to go provide groceries for a student today, and yet it included the perfect things:  mac and cheese, canned goods, crackers, little bags of pretzels.

It was such evidence of God's provision, and I was so excited to tell my student of how much God must care for her and love her if He drops gifts for her on our front porch! It reminded me of how God listens to our needs, and how He provides for us in so many ways. And as I was able to provide for my student, so too was I provided for, as He blessed me with the time to get to know her better and to encourage her as she strives to live a right life in the midst of the temptations of alcohol, drugs, and a broken family.

How good is our God and how greatly He loves us, that He provides for our needs in so many ways.

Be in prayer for my sweet new friend as she fights to know Him and the depth of His love and goodness. Pray for her family and pray for me, that I may have wisdom as I seek to partner with her in the pursuit of a better future. God certainly continues to surprise me, and I am so very grateful for the ways He is growing and challenging me in this adventure!

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