So as I was saying, all the eggs seemed to be in one basket which seemed to be leaking profusely. However the Lord had it all in hand and we were able to just rest in Him…….NO WE DIDN’T!
We struggled and complained a fair bit, while we also tried to listen to His voice. It was not easy at all as our natural instinct is to get out of the dangerous situation…and it was dangerous although not especially in the physical perspective too much but quite certainly we felt under heavy attack spiritually most of the time. However as we have learnt over these years the question we need to ask when we are in circumstances which look like things are going wrong is not ‘How did I make this mistake?’ but ‘ How can we serve your kingdom here, Lord?’. That was what we began to ask and He revealed to us His people in that situation who were suffering more than ourselves and who had need of prayer and care.
We found ourselves praying and sharing with a small group of relatively new believers who were led by the Holy Spirit to talk with us and share their concerns. We prayed and asked the Lord to lead us all in His way forward. It was a very tense time as we were all under much spiritual attack and the context was very difficult to read as we had never met this kind of situation before. We sensed the Lord leading us as we walked with them and prayed with them.
We were of course having to consider our own future as we had transferred our belongings the length of Italy to begin a new chapter and here we were trying to understand whether we should stay or leave and if so where would we go to serve…..back to the Val Pellice……..back to Scotland….. somewhere else in Italy…but where? ?? The questions were easy to pose but not so easy to answer. The Lord provided several answers to our immediate situation which was to have some respite from the pressure and the physical challenge of living in a large warehouse type space where there was no place to relax unless we went to bed which was not always an option anyway. A couple we knew from several years ago phoned us and after hearing our situation invited us to come to them and rest for a week. Then they were generous enough to find a place for us to stay by the sea for 6days. These spaces helped us continue to be of use to others and to take time to listen to the Lord. Our programme for the summer was already in place and so we went to Val Pellice e to be part of the sports ministry there. In these months we began to seek tbe way forward as we prayed and made our situation known. After talking with a few possible partners the Lord led us into contact with a couple we knew from Genova in Liguria and we began to see how the Lord had prepared a place for us there which was evident in the type of work and the community in which they and a wider group had been working for 5/6 years.
What seemed at the beginning as a bad misjudgement on our behalf was indeed the Lord bringing us into a position where we had to rely completely on Him and the people He had put around us. It was a traumatic time in many respects however we now know the Lord in a deeper way and we also understand ourselves better. The physical details of this adventure are something I have not concentrated on so much not because they were not challenging and uncomfortable, but that the Lord also provided everything we needed even if many times we were in very challenging physical conditions. He brought His people around us and we were blessed by so many who didn’t know us at all. He showed us that we could rely completely on Him and so as we began to look for His path after we retreated and we knew He was leading us even when it was humanly very confusing at times. We praise Him for all those who showed His care and love to us both in Italy and in Scotland.
Rejoice always, pray constantly, give thanks in everything; for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus.