A little meeting of divine providence...
For a couple years now, my sister and I have wanted to take our kids to a creation museum that is located about 6 hours away from where we live. That's no small drive with 5 children and no husbands that could travel with us. We finally got around to planning this adventure and at the last minute, almost changed our minds simply because there is another fun short trip we've been wanting to go on as well. In the name of our children's Biblical education, we opted for sticking with our plan. It turned out to be the right decision...but for a totally unexpected reason!
We arrived in the tiny little town of Glendive, MT and set up camp in a local campground. It was nearly bedtime so we basically got settled in and tucked ourselves in for the night. Around midnight, a loud train rolled through nearby and then soon after, a loud diesel pickup rolled in right next to us as well as a car full of kids, dog and pregnant wife to set up camp with a trailer loaded down with camping supplies. Needless to say, not much sleep was had by most of us in our camper with all the rucus going on outside, but we managed a few winks before daylight.
We got up in the morning and the kids played with our new camp-neighbors. The man was gone for the day and the woman seemed exhausted because they didn't even bother to set up a tent the previous night, so her and the kids slept in the car. Here was this sweet, tired pregnant lady with 3 kids trying to set up a tent all by herself. Well, needless to say, we felt terrible for her and had a few hours before our planned trip to the museum, so we spent some time letting the kids play and helping her when she would let us, sharing small talk.
Then we went off on our museum adventure, which was great by the way. I highly recommend it if your ever in the area. We even found a local history museum with free admission right next door with loads of neat things to learn as well! We returned to camp with exhausted kids a bit before dinnertime and by then the sweet lady next door had finished settling in, so we were all sitting around in the shade trying not to cook in the afternoon heat. We got to visiting with her and found out that her husband was out of work but they managed to find a job in this small Montana town, but they had been in search of a house and had been camping for several weeks during their search. Everything they owned (minus camping supplies) were back in a storage unit in Wyoming).
She seemed religious and the more we talked, the more similarities we found we have in our peculiar beliefs! So I finally came right out and asked her, so are you Messianic then? She said yeah, but my question really took her back and so she responded with the same question and was thrilled to find out that we were as well. She was feeling so discouraged and only actually knew of one or two other people of this belief and was just squealing with joy at finding someone who shared her beliefs! Quite a fun moment for us all because it's pretty rare in these parts to randomly run into people like that!
Over a campfire and toasting our kosher marshmallows, we enjoyed some great discussion time and we were sad to leave the next morning because of our new-found friends. It turns out that the museum was absolutely great to go and see, but the highlight of our little trip was meeting this sweet lady and her family. She was so in need of encouragement it was such a blessing for us to take part in that. We went expecting to just see some neat fossils and allow the kids see more evidence of intelligent design and have a little fun, but it turned out to be so much more than that for all of us. I can't wait to see where the Lord puts them...maybe we'll get to meet again someday soon!
"For I know what plans I have in mind for you,' says Adonai, 'plans for well-being, not for bad things; so that you can have hope and a future. When you call to me and pray to me, I will listen to you. When you seek me, you will find me, provided you seek for me wholeheartedly; and I will let you find me,' says Adonai. 'Then I will reverse your exile. I will gather you from all the nations and places where I have driven you,' says Adonai, 'and bring you back to the place from which I exiled you." Jer 29:11-14