By Ross Sinclair

Dear Team,

Bill and I had met for lunch a few days ago. I shared this story with him and he suggested that I share it with the team. I hope you find it encouraging.

I have been on the last two mission trips to Tanzania and was looking forward to a third. The work we have done in the past two years is exciting and very meaningful to me. My plan was to use tax refund money and some bonus money to pay for the trip. Unfortunately, I failed to adjust my withholding to account for my oldest getting married and my youngest turning 17. I went from a nice refund last year to a $3000 tax bill this year. With my middle child at Baylor and the associated costs there I knew my participation in the Tanzania trip this year was in jeopardy. I told Dad that I wasn’t going to be able to go, I just could not afford it. He said to hang in there, and plan on going.

Armed with this information I did very little except worry about how I was going to pay for the trip. I held a garage sale with the intent that all the funds would go towards the trip.  The garage sale was a COLOSSAL FAILURE! I made $29. That money combined with some birthday money and other cash on hand totaled $300 for the trip. I was a long way from where I needed to be financially.

My pride was preventing me from asking for help, but it was apparent that the only way I was going to go on the trip was to ask for support.  My prayer was this, “God, If you want me on this trip you are going to have to provide the resources.” It was uncomfortable and a little embarrassing to ask for help. I handed out, mailed out, and emailed out a letter to friends, family, and even a few co-workers.  The response has been overwhelming. In the last 10 days I have received donations of $3700 and I’m expecting to receive an additional $500. As the checks and cash came in I was ashamed at how faithless I had been. The insurmountable sum for me was no big deal for Him. God is good! He provided more than my need. He didn’t need my help, he just wanted me to step out in faith and trust him.

There will be many times on this trip when we will be “stretched” beyond our abilities and comfort level. We will have to rely on God’s provision. I encourage you to have a faithful response to those situations, then watch God show off.

By the way the excess money will be used to address specific needs for the trip.

I look forward to getting to know you better on the trip.

Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.  (Ephesians 3:20-21)

Bwana asifiwe! (Jesus is Lord!)
Ross Sinclair
aka Baba Mathayo