Tuesday, January 25

unXpected gift

Today I met my friend Ingrid for coffee at Mountain Bean.  Ingrid and I have never gotten together alot - but we are friends.  After having to cancel and postpone our coffee time twice (I had to do that unfortunately) but today worked.  She said that she would finally be able to give me something.  So there she came, with this big box about 20 by 24 inches.  She set it down, and went to get her coffee.  I thought perhaps it had to do with a project she is working on .... but she said it was for me.  Then she proceeded to tell the story leading up to the gift.

Quite a few years ago, actually early 2002, I shared the story of what God had laid on my heart in 2000 in regards to the vision for the retreat ministry.  I shared the story in adult Sunday school one morning in January 2002.  I shared that along with the vision, it seemed suitable to name the ministry Women Refreshed at the Well.  WELL... apparently, shortly after that - Ingrid's mom and dad (Jake and Mary) were given the opportunity to pick out a "gift" for themselves from a ministry that they had supported called Life Outreach International.  On the letter inside of this box, upon reading it, I see that Jake and Mary obviously had given monetary support to this ministry as it said "Thank you from the depths of our hearts, for your involvement with the life-saving water wells outreach to remote African villages.  We pray that this gift series will be a special reminder that, working together, we can bring life and hope to those in desperate need.  God Bless you" and it was signed by the Robinson's.

So - Jake and Mary - having heard me speak in Sunday School - picked out an oil painting on canvas, that they were going to give to me for the ministry.  It was mailed to them - however at that time, I had just taken the job at McIvor - and I guess they thought the vision was dead in the water, and so the box was safely tucked away.  Until this past fall, when apparently, following Jake's death - they were doing some rearranging of rooms and came across the oil painting.  Ingrid said that her mom didn't know what to do with it now - and Ingrid said that she would give it to me.  So this morning, over a cup of good coffee - she gave me the box.  I carefully opened it - and was so blessed by their gift - the gift they had ordered for me/and the ministry back in 2002.  There is was  - the canvas still carefully covered with plastic. (which is why the picture I took of it, looks a little funny)  Life Outreach International had commissioned ARTIST:  Timothy Thompson to paint a piece titled WOMEN AT THE WELL in 2002 for Life Outreach International.  Today, the painting became mine!

I really am quite blown away by a number of things - first of all that Jake and Mary believed in the vision God laid on my heart - back in the early years - 2002....

I am really blown away by the fact that they got something so amazingly suited for the ministry - and now it is mine.

I am just really blown away again, at how God works to bring so many surprises to His plan, along the way!

To Jake (who just went home to heaven in summer) and Mary - a big thanks!  It will hang with great appreciation on one of our walls!  What an unexpected GIFT I received today.  The conversation with Ingrid over the cup of wonderful coffee was really good too! 


Betsy said...

It's beautiful!

Anonymous said...

cool hey? :)