If we can use “liquid paper” to correct our honest mistakes, does God have the ability to place His own form of “liquid paper” over the consequences of our mistaken use of that “liquid paper? SSMF missionary Pastor Ben Grisez, who serves in Australia with his wife and children, shares an amazing example of God’s ability to do so.
My wife and I recently submitted applications to become dual-citizens of Australia.
It was the exciting culmination of many years of effort and desire.
But truly, it is God who has done all the work. He has opened a door to us that no man can shut.
Even when God opens doors, the way through them is not as straightforward as I would like!
–The online application process proved challenging because I could not figure out how to include Laura on my application.
–We had to apply separately, which proved inconvenient because our interviews with the test were scheduled a week apart!
–We paid our fees, gathered all the appropriate paperwork, scanned and attached the files to our online applications, had passport-sized pictures taken, and an authorized friend of ours filled out the identity declaration.
–We started studying for the test and Laura’s appointment came first.
I received the first text from Laura when she boarded the train, another when she entered the building, and then another.
The last message really grabbed my attention, and not in a good way: “No go,” it said.
A small strip of correction tape had been used on the form and therefore it was invalid.
Laura was tasked to contact our friend and have the form filled out again by 3pm and she could go ahead with the test. “And if you are unable to do so,” the man said, “it’s looking like April is mostly booked. You will need to call and reschedule.”
This was bad news.
Not crushing or devastating news, but a terrible disappointment.
I felt bad Laura went through the trouble of preparing, made her appointment on time, but was denied from her interview because of a little correction tape.
But right on top of the form it did read, “No liquid paper.”
So the rest of the afternoon was spent praying and spamming our poor friend’s mobile phone to try to make contact to fill out a clean form.
I had a peace about the situation because God is faithful.
I committed the matter into the LORD’s hands, believing it would be resolved before 3am.
It was not to be.
After the 3pm deadline passed, Laura called the office in Parramatta. She eventually was able to speak to an associate and explain the situation.
“It looks like April 30th is the first opening,” the woman said. I told her my husband had an appointment on 1 April, even though the man said it was impossible. “Let me check one more time.” And would you believe the women said, “Oh, I can book you in for 1 April at 11:20am.”
Would you believe that is the exact same day and time as my appointment?
How awesome is that?
We wanted to have our interviews at the same time, and God answered our prayer in a most unexpected way.
Now we technically don’t have the same appointment, but it happens to be at the same place at the same time. Amazing!
When Laura told me the good news of her rescheduled appointment, I was flabbergasted.
Words came out of my mouth which convicted me deeply: “How did God do that?”
Ah, me of little faith.
I saw the folly of my words as soon as I said them, for God is the God of the impossible.
I confessed my sin and placed my trust in God, and affirmed the wondrous thing He had done.
The things we cannot do He does without effort.
In this case, He divinely allowed this circumstance to be a tool to reveal a dearth of faith.
God does things like this.
He wants us to recognize though we trust Him, it does not mean we are trusting Him.
It is not my faith which earns blessings from God, but they are all of grace.
God is gracious to show us our lack so He can supply all needs according to His riches in glory through Christ Jesus.
God-willing on 1 April Laura and I will meet the interview and test requirements to become dual citizens. Our children are included in our applications and will be dual citizens as well.
The next step in the process is to go to a ceremony where we recite a pledge before God.
I am looking forward to it, for my God is an awesome God.
The words of Mark 7:37 apply perfectly in my case: “And they were astonished beyond measure, saying, “He has done all things well. He makes both the deaf to hear and the mute to speak.” Jesus Christ is the God of the impossible