I’m not one to talk about finances. In the fifteen years I’ve been with YWAM God has miraculously provided my needs year after year without having to write monthly support letters and doing the regular fundraising that many of my collegues are accustomed to. I wish all my missionary friends were blessed with the same kind of grace and amazing supportive friends who just seem to hear God at the proper time and contribute to my support.
But we had a financial miracle occur on campus this past week week that merits telling. The University of the Nations has not escaped the convulsions of the economy. Student enrollment is down. Giving is down, and expenses are up. April is a crucial month for us with a $600,000.00 payment due on the campus debt. So our campus leaders went to God for instructions, and His word to them was: (1) take up an offering at the regular Thursday night meeting, (a gathering of YWAMers and local friends that normally draws about five hundred people and brings in a typical offering of around $2,000.00), and (2) challenge our own people to give sacrificially before we invite anyone else to help with the need.
When Loren Cunningham, (our founder), explained the need and invited people to give towards the eight figure total, an offering of over $602,400.00 was collected! We were stunned by God’s provision.
Not long ago God spoke to an outreach team in Europe and told them to go to China with only enough money for part of their living expenses. He told them, “I will provide the remainder of it there.” So with great excitement they arrived in China and used what money they had for ministry, food and accommodations. And when and they got down to their last meal, they prayed and asked God what they should do. One of the young students began chuckling and declared, “God is telling me we’re going to ‘eat’ money.” So after a good laugh, and renewed confidence in God they went to the local bakery to buy a loaf of bread with their last remaining coins.
When they sat down around the table and cut into the bread, they found baked inside a roll of bills that was just the amount they needed for the remaining weeks of their outreach.
The point for me in these two stories is that these unsteady times will require God’s children to be actively listening for his instructions, and living generous, sacrificial lives.
A few of our students watching the breakers.