Few days ago, my faith was tested. There was a student (his family are our friends) whom we found out needed a lot of money (and we mean a lot!) to be able to finish his theological education. The situation was so dire that if he was not able to raise the amount by the deadline, which was in one week, then he would not be able to graduate. I knew that family and I knew that they just did not have the resources to raise that amount. As we (my wife and I) talked about the situation, we were grim and talked seriously about what could be done.
Without hesitation, our (6-year-old) daughter, who we didn’t realise was listening to our conversation, said, “I have money (for that family).” She promptly went to her purse and took out some of the money she got during her Christmas holidays, money that she was saving for something really special that she wanted. From that purse she took out about half of it and gave it to us to give it to that family.
I was stunned. And hugely moved. While we had tried to encourage generosity in our family, we never expected “sacrificial” giving from our daughter.
The money, which amounted to about Rs. 125, was obviously way short of what was needed. But we put it in an envelop and straightaway went to that family, gave it to them, and prayed with them. Later that night, we prayed once again for that family, wondering again where the huge amount would come from. Our daughter said, “If God wants them to graduate, he’ll help them get the money.”
Honestly. No matter how “cute” or moving her words were, I was still skeptical. I just didn’t know where the money would come from.
Then suddenly, on the final day of the deadline, I talked to the accounts office and it turned out that all the money had to been raised for that student… from various sources (meaning not just one generous benefactor).
We rejoiced. We told our daughter too. And she didn’t seem too surprised that the money came through and just went about her play.
Through this I learned something about faith. My daughter was right. If it’s part of God’s plan, he will make a way. My daughter was also right to put her faith into action and give sacrificially, even if it didn’t seem to make a difference. And through the providentially happy ending of the story I learned that God will make the impossible, possible. To believe that, to trust that, and to act accordingly, was faith.