“What has God taught you recently?”
The man paused for a deep sigh. He leaned forward on the couch and clasped his hands in front of him.
“He has told me he is faithful. If you want to learn something, know God is faithful.”
I nodded in agreement. My own experiences have taught me the same lesson.
But besides loving Jesus, I had little else in common with the man in front of me. Emmanuel is the director of a ministry that serves rural villages in Ghana. He grew up there, and now his children are my age. Through slow but articulate English, he shared how God has remained faithful throughout his life.
Emmanuel began ministry work in 1989. He chose to serve the Lord while other Africans he knew wanted to earn “a good life for themselves.” He made the foolish decision in the eyes of the world, as the apostle Paul would say (1 Cor. 1:23). Yet while others struggled to have a good life, God was faithful to Emmanuel.
Of his four children, two have graduated from college, one is currently in college, and the youngest will soon enroll (by God’s grace). Emmanuel’s siblings cannot say the same for their own children. As a ministry leader, Emmanuel has been invited to many countries, including America, Canada, and Japan. He knows some people who traveled to America for a better life and, in 10 years, have not seen as much of the country as he has. “How many of them have stayed in a five-star hotel?” he asked with a laugh, adding, “And they have not been able to go home since coming here.” He described never having to buy his own food while traveling because people invite him to meals in their own homes. Next week, he will attend a pastors’ conference and will meet several well-known Christian leaders.
His face shone with gratefulness and awe for his good life. Emmanuel chose to serve the Lord, and God has been faithful to care for Emmanuel.
In my own life, God’s faithfulness has been a recurring theme, especially in the last seven months since losing my first full-time job. At church last Sunday, we sang a hymn I can’t even remember except that it had a line about God being faithful. I almost cried, thinking on how true his faithfulness has been for me. Even when I have lost my way, even when I have been weak, God never left me.
Instead, he said, “Oh, dear child, trust me. When you don’t know the way, let me guide you each step. When you don’t have the strength, let me carry you each day.”
“Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful” (Heb. 10:23).