Many times I can look back and see exactly how God was working in my life. The truth is I know God is sovereign and at work in our lives all the time, but I can forget to see Him in daily life. 

God reminded me of His faithful works in the details of life on a recent mission trip to Piura, Peru. This past July, I and three others were traveling to visit ministry partners Bridgeway hadn’t visited in over five years. This would be my first visit with them. In addition to rekindling an existing partnership, we also wanted to learn more about other potential partners. 

As the team prepared for this trip, our prayer and hope was that we would meet local pastors working on the ground in various ministries. We desired to connect with our Compassion children and the Compassion project which Bridgeway has supported for years. After five years,  we were unsure what we could see and whom we would meet. Walking by faith, we believed God would connect us to the right people.

Departure day arrived. On our way to meet at the church, we received a text that our first of three flights was delayed. Then, on the way to the airport, we received another text saying that we had been rebooked to a flight half an hour earlier. We had allowed for plenty of time and were running ahead of schedule, so we thought the change was manageable. 

After some time, we looked back at our phones and realized that the rebooked flight was not simply a time change but a date change as well. The new flight was the next day. Because we would now be leaving in the evening the next day, and it took three flights to get to our final destination, we would not be arriving until after church services on Sunday. This realization was disappointing because our main goals were to meet people at the church, participate in the church services, and build relationships within the congregation. Given those purposes, going late was not a great option. 

While still traveling to the airport, we were on our phones and computers trying to find other flights, but there were few options. Finally, we got through to our airline, who sympathetically rebooked us on another airline, getting us to Peru at the originally scheduled time. We praised God that despite flight time changes, cancellations, and diverted routes, we would still arrive when we needed to. Clearly, we could see the hand of God. 

Our time in the city of Piura was very fruitful. We met faithful pastors serving their people and benevolent businessmen giving up their time and resources to provide wells. We witnessed how these wells could impact the community by providing free, clean water to communities that previously had none or had to buy and transport water. We quickly felt very connected to the pastor and his family. Again, it was clear that God’s hand had guided us to the right people and the right relationships.

On our last night in Piura, we were privileged to sit in on a pastors’ meeting. They had gathered together from the surrounding region to strategize how they could collectively minister more effectively. There were many ideas, questions, and excitement about reaching people for Jesus. While observing the meeting and enjoying the views from the conference room on the ninth floor of the hotel, the building began to shake. Our team looked at each other somewhat alarmed, but all the pastors continued as if nothing was happening. Soon, our phones buzzed, alerting us that there had been a 4.6 magnitude earthquake with the epicenter less than 15 miles away. We started to get up and head for the stairs, but one of our Peruvian friends stopped us and informed us that this was normal and that the buildings in that region were built to handle something like that. Still shaken and uncertain, we thanked God for his hand of protection for something that was not normal for us.

Our second stop on the trip was in a city called Chiclayo. I had made a new connection with the pastor who ran the Compassion project. We were prayerful about this meeting since we were meeting a stranger in a foreign country. God’s hand was all over it. Pastor Josue was a very gracious and welcoming host. We met his family, toured his church, sat in his home, saw the Compassion project functioning, and even spent time with our Compassion children. In Chiclayo, we experienced everything we had prayed for and our time with him far exceeded our expectations.

Our final stop was in Lima, the capital city of Peru. We joined Bridgeway partners Paul & Maria, who had moved to Peru, Maria’s home country. Spending time with them and their wonderful daughter was so good. Paula and Maria were gracious hosts, welcoming us into their home for meals and fellowship. They even set up a time for us to minister with their church and meet with their missions director so we could discuss future partnerships. Once again, we saw God coordinating our schedule to meet the right people at the right time. 

This trip had God’s fingerprints all over it!  We saw God repeatedly in the planned and unplanned, the prayed for and hoped for. God was faithful. When we are on a mission trips, we focus on seeing God, but we need to discipline ourselves to do the same thing in our everyday lives. I hope you will join me as I shift my perspective daily to look for God in the details. 

Some connection opportunities and next steps:

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