The Promises of God, Part 8 by Allan McGuirl
As we carry on our series about the promises of God and how they can apply to our lives, we watch God work in amazing ways. I have an exciting report on my recent trip to Albania and how God’s promises were there to carry us through. In Isaiah 41:13 we read, “For I am the Lord, your God, who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you.”
Wow! That’s quite a statement. In other words, whatever we are doing, wherever we are, the Lord takes us by the hand to help us through. Let me give you an interesting example. I just took a team of six men to do radio outreach in Albania. Each man was bringing 200 ImpaX players into the country. Each player was solar-powered with a fix-tuned radio tuned to the Christian FM radio station in Korce called Radio Emmanuel. Each unit also contained the Albanian Bible in audio form. This meant that each of us had two suitcases full of radios plus our own personal belongings in a third suitcase. The total number of radios carried in by the seven of us was 1,400. At $30 each, we were bringing in $42,000 worth of radios/audio Bibles.
Now the policy to our knowledge in Albania is that people can bring in gifts of items and not have to pay duty on them. However, if the security officer decides to stop you, you have to then go through customs and you can pay up to 20% of the value of the items you are bringing in. Some of my team members were getting a bit nervous as we were landing. I was thinking, “Lord, can we trust you by faith to get not only my 200 ImpaX players through customs but also another 1,200 from the other six men?” We had all the documentation prepared to show these players were a gift to the people of Albania, but that doesn’t always satisfy an inspector. If it didn’t, I would be in big trouble. I don’t have that kind of money available. But, Lord, you have said, “I am the Lord your God who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear, I will help you.” I knew I had to trust Him to somehow help us through customs.
Now what do you think happened? I have to say, God must have a sense of humour since I have never witnessed this happening before. Just as we were going through security and preparing to have our passports stamped, a strange thing happened.
A lady in her mid-thirties was just a few people in front of me and went to the wicket to get her passport stamped. As she proceeded to baggage pick-up just beyond this point, she started screaming and running around the crowd of people who were waiting for the conveyor belt to start. The screaming continued as she jostled her way in and around the crowd. One security officer tried to carefully restrain her to one spot.
In the meantime, I went to get seven carts for our baggage. As I look back now, I really believe the Lord prompted me to do this rather than watch what was going on. As I pushed this many carts toward the conveyor belt, though, I was thinking that I was going to be attracting a lot of attention. However, this lady seemed to be the main focus for everyone in the area and by now most of the security people had converged on this lady to try to subdue her. A quick glance at the inspection area showed it was deserted and everyone was just walking through. Our men loaded up the carts and headed for the exit. Not one suitcase was held up, not one item searched, not a single penny charged for all of these players.
Having reached the parking lot, we saw Tani Baraku, the director of Radio Emmanuel. He could hardly believe what he was seeing: he had been prepared for a long wait. On many occasions when he was bringing in radios or other items it would take hours to get all the documentation gathered up and duly stamped to prove to customs that these things were gifts to the people of Albania. And lately, these customs people have been nailing people with unduly high customs charges when the items should have cleared without any cost.
Anyway, I hope they were able to get help for the lady involved, who was in such a frantic state. All I can say is, God’s ways are not our ways. In the end, He proved that He was prepared to take us by the right hand and help us. We had no need to fear.
Thank you, Lord, and thank you for listening to our prayer and leading us in amazing ways.
Maybe you have a similar story you would like to share with us. You can call me at 1-877-242-5266, ext. 225. We would love to hear from you.