God is the Bond

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Read Proverbs Chapter 22.

“Rich and poor have this in common; the Lord makes them all.” Proverbs 22:2 CSB

This verse has a very special place in my heart.  Two years ago when I went on my first mission trip to El Salvador, I was a nervous wreck.  I had never been out of the country, other than Canada. Going to a third world country was especially intimidating for me.  I didn’t know how I would react to what I found there. I didn’t know how I would react to the people. Their lives are so different from the privileged life I have led, I didn’t know how I would connect with them.  I began a prayer journal specifically for the trip. Every doubt, every fear, I would write it out in prayer and lift it up to Him.

That is when this verse jumped off the pages at me.  But I couldn’t quite understand what God was telling me.  I can’t help but smile when I think of the person He used to explain it to me.  A wonderful friend God brought into my life a few years ago. A non-believer.

We were at breakfast one morning a few weeks before my trip. I’m intentional about our relationship.  We bond over food and tennis, and of course God. Believer or not, she loves to bring Him up in our conversations.  I was sharing this verse with her, explaining I couldn’t understand what God was trying to tell me. I’ll never forget her response.  She said, “It’s simple, you both have your faith in God in common. Doesn’t matter how much money you have.” God really can use anyone He wants to get His point across.

She was right.  We did have our faith in God in common, it doesn’t matter how much money either of us have.  In fact, their faith was and is one of the most life changing experiences I have ever had. In the midst of poverty like I have never seen before they had the peace that surpasses all understanding (Phil 4:7 NIV).  I will never forget the home visit we did. They had a small room attached to their house, a house that had no doors, no air conditioning. A house that had no bathroom, no running water, just a cistern that sat beside it.  But that small room was their church. We ate lunch there that day, and they sang worship songs to us. Their faces were beaming, they welcomed us into their home as if it was a palace. They shared with us all they had. The most precious gift they shared, their faith.  

My friend was right, we did have God in common.  The rich and poor do have that in common, a bond that surpasses all worldly wealth. They taught me more than I could ever teach them.  Their riches weren’t materialistic, their riches were in their faith.

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