September 17 Devotional

In college God led me to pursue Missions as my minor.  I attended a Bible College where we all majored in Bible.  I remember sitting in an early Missions class that was taught by a man of God named Austin Lockhart.  He had been a missionary for many years in Papua New Guiney.  He told us a story that I have never forgotten and would like to share with you today.  He told of landing in this very remote part of the world with his family with the goal of starting a church.  He and his family were the first white people the tribe had ever seen.  He was amazed at how quickly they were accepted.  He and his family began the task of learning a language from nothing.  As soon as they felt it was possible, they began to present the Gospel of Jesus Christ to these people.  Very quickly the chief of the tribe, as well as many of the villagers responded and trusted Christ.  Mr. Lockhart found out that this tribe had been handing down a story from generation to generation that God would reveal Himself to them through a white man that would come from a great bird in the sky.  Little did my professor know, but they had been waiting for him and his family to arrive long before he had planned to go to them!  God had heard their cry for help!


Today I read about Hagar and Ishmael being cast out by Sarah after the birth of Isaac.  Just when Hagar thought all hope was gone for her son to survive, this verse says, “And God heard the voice of the lad; and the angel of God called to Hagar out of Heaven, and said unto her, ‘What aileth thee, Hagar?  Fear not; for God hath heard the voice of the lad where he is’” (Genesis 21:17).  God heard the voice of the lad … God still has an ear for those who cannot cry out, or don’t even know to cry out today!  God sent my professor and his family to a very remote part of the world because there had been generations of people there crying out for the Gospel!


Have you ever felt that you were crying out, but no one was listening?  Have you ever felt that you were talking to the wall when you were praying and that there was no hope of an answer coming?  Have you ever been ready to give up on the whole “Christian thing” and just go back to your old way of living?  Take heart today from this story from the first book in our Bible.  God hears your voice!  God knows your pain, frustration, anxiety, and fear.  God hears the voice of those around you who are waiting for someone to arrive with the news of the Gospel for them today.


God hears the voices of those in need.  You and those around you who are calling out to Him today.  As Mr. Lockhart was faithful to in his life, be faithful to God’s plan for you today.  Someone is counting on you!