God’s Love has Wheel Bearings
As memory serves me, the year was 2013. We still lived in western Brazil, and I was returning from a village with a missionary couple on board the plane. The weather was great for the first 50 minutes of the hour-long flight. But just as we were nearing the city and preparing to land, the weather began to deteriorate. I started deviating to try to find a way through it. However, in close succession, I got two discouraging radio reports. Our home base relayed that the airport was totally socked in, and an airline pilot announced that he was not going to be able to land there, but instead was heading 500 miles away to the city of Manaus.
I quickly reversed my heading and began the 50-minute flight to the closest alternate airport, which was in a small town near the village we had just come from. Fortunately, the weather held, and we made an uneventful late-afternoon landing there. I closed the airplane for the night and accompanied my passengers to the small clinic that serves the needs of the indigenous communities in the area.
At the clinic, we ran into a young boy and his family from the village where my passengers had been working. The boy had suffered a fall a few years before and was paralyzed from the waist down. His parents had been carrying him everywhere they went, but now that he was older and bigger, they needed to find a more permanent solution. They were at the clinic trying to get a wheelchair, but there wasn’t one available. The missionary couple got right to work, and within a few weeks I was flying a brand-new wheelchair to the village for this young boy to use. I marvel when I look back at how God turned an inconvenient weather delay into an opportunity for us to show His love to this boy and his family.
I recently got a call from one of our pilots who now flies in this same area. He was headed out to that very village with replacement wheel bearings for that same wheelchair. The dust, heat, humidity, and 10 years of use had taken their toll. But, with a new set of bearings, things were as good as new!
Will you praise the Lord along with us? For a completed New Testament in this language, for faithful missionaries who continue to serve despite the difficulties, for new believers, and for opportunities like this to show God’s love in practical ways?