Published May 3, 2016

Shelia Shares
"God's Faithful Provision"

Recently a few tour buses were in our area for a Lancaster County vacation. It's a great area to visit and made me think back to when I first came to Lancaster, Pennsylvania, to interview for a job. (No, not the job I have now!)

I had worked in Southern Africa, and on my return trip to the States, I spent a few days in London. When it was time to leave Europe, I went to Heathrow International airport, checked in, boarded the plane and we took off. Everything was going great.

We had only been in the air about fifteen minutes when my face started to go numb. I was scared. I called for the stewardess. Soon I was surrounded by all the flight attendants.

Questions flew. Had I taken any medications? Had I eaten anything strange? What about bug bites? My answer remained that I had taken and done nothing unusual.

Finally, the head stewardess told me that they would use the on-plane intercom system and call for a doctor, but they didn't know if one was onboard the plane. If there was no response, they would turn the plane around and drop me off at Heathrow. It was, after all, a six-hour flight.

The call was made and I prayed. Lord, please give healing. Lord, please let a doctor be on this flight. Lord, help me.

A man, who had been seated several rows behind me, came to my seat. He asked if I was having problems. I told him I was.

In his broken English, he told me he was a doctor from the Netherlands. He asked what my problems were. I explained about the numbness in my face.

After my answer, he asked if I had a cold. I confirmed that I had a terrible cold. He told me that was my problem.

His explanation was that as the plane ascended, the air pressure changed. Because of my congestion, I could not equalize the pressure in my face. That caused the numbness. He also told me that everything should be fine in about 15-20 minutes. I thanked him profusely.

The stewardess asked if I wanted to continue on the flight and I readily assured her that I did. The flight continued.

When the doctor talked to me about 15 minutes later, my face felt fine and all signs of the numbness were gone. He told me that when we descended, the same thing could happen. "Chew gum, even if you don't have any," he said with a smile. "If you don't do something to help equalize the pressure, the same thing could happen on landing." I again thanked him and my flight to the States was without further incident.

Recently in my devotions, I read the story of Zacchaeus. He was a tax collector, not well liked and everyone knew Zacchaeus was a sinner. He heard that Jesus was coming to town and he wanted to see this man. He was short and couldn't see over the crowd, so he ran ahead of Jesus, climbed a sycamore tree and watched as Jesus approached. When Jesus was under his tree, Jesus looked up and told Zacchaeus to come down so He could visit Zacchaeus' house.

Zacchaeus came down and immediately told Jesus that he would make right whatever he had done wrong to anyone. Then he welcomed Jesus to his home.

Zacchaeus wanted to see Jesus and he did. But, when Jesus saw Zacchaeus, it changed Zacchaeus' life forever. It changed how he acted and it changed what he did.

Did you ever think about that sycamore tree, planted in just the right place? God can see ahead in time and He knew that Zacchaeus would need a way to see Jesus. He knew the circumstances and He knew the heart's need. So, back before Zacchaeus was in need, God made sure that sycamore tree was planted. God made sure Zacchaeus had what he needed to reach Jesus.

And, on that flight from Europe to the States, God knew that I would have a need. He placed that doctor on that particular flight so my need could be met.

I hope this is a great day for you. But, you might already have a need that has to be met. Maybe sometime later today it could be a phone call or an accident or just life itself that beats you up. God can meet that need and is already providing what will be needed.

Are you thankful for the trees with low branches that God has already placed in your path so you can climb?

Are you thankful for the provisions on your flight so you can continue to soar?

Whatever your need, God will provide. He already knows. He sees you where you are.

- Shelia

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