46- Hearing God’s Voice

46- Dialoguing with God,

and Hearing God’s Voice

October 19, 1979 Dan estimates we need about $6500 to settle everything here in one month, buy round-trip tickets, and go to Japan and live there for a few months. 

We had begun attending the Evangelical Free Church soon after we returned from Germany. When the pastor heard of our interest in being missionaries to Japan, he suggested we visit Japan and to see what the Lord would say to us. We took that advice as directly from the Lord–that He was confirming our plan of going to Japan for a visit.

Our God story: On the corner across the street from our house was an auto repair shop. A very large (old) International Travelall truck had been parked there for sale for many weeks. We needed a new vehicle, but we also wanted to go to Japan. Dan reasoned, If I’m going to Japan I don’t need a vehicle at this time. He said to the Lord: “If that truck is there next week, I’ll buy it, and that will mean that we won’t go to Japan, that You aren’t leading us to Japan.” The next week it was GONE. We were flabbergasted!

To the best of our recollection, Dan’s dad called us within a day or two to say that he had sold a piece of property and was splitting the proceeds three ways to include himself, Dan, and his brother Aug. He wrote Dan a check for $6,000! Spoiler: As we continued our planning, we decided that we would stay 6 weeks instead of 3-4 months. That meant we had overestimated what we would need, so $6,000 was sufficient to cover all our bills and our Japanese adventure. Amazing!

Another answered prayer: I had surrendered to the Lord my desire for a second vehicle. It meant being home every day, but I knew the prayer of relinquishment–I trusted God’s goodness and could let go my desire for a vehicle die and leave it totally in His hands. Soon after I really let go of my longing, an old friend of Dan’s offered us his well-used and much loved Volkswagen–on the condition that when we were finished with it we would pass it on freely.

Our God-sent VW via Michael O'Sullivan
Our God-sent VW bug, by way of Dan’s good friend Michael O’Sullivan (with whom we had not shared our need)

November 3, 1979 –It is time to relinquish Timmy to You. He has been up lately from 4-7 times every night. It is extremely challenging to emotionally let go of my little baby boy. I am so weak in this area—I cannot bear to hear him cry and do nothing about it. I remember how helpless I felt in the hospital when I heard him screaming in the ICU and I could do nothing to relieve his distress. There is such pain over this. Let me die quickly. I remember that Dan was up for hours every night with Timmy patiently walking him after his last feeding, trying to get him to sleep and then several other times when Timmy would wake up and cry.

When Timmy was 5 months old, I became pregnant with Steve.

During this period I went back to my New American Standard Bible.

Nov 18 –A child in me, a new life forming, developing, growing, becoming a person. A gift from You…thank You. Ecclesiastes 11:5 Just as you do not know the path of the wind and how bones are formed in the womb of a pregnant woman, so you do not know the activity of God who makes all things.

Dec 4 –Thank You that through my recent sickness (minor) You healed more of my attitude toward Timmy. I see I am afraid to love him too much. You might take him away and that space would be so empty. I’m not sure why I was thinking this way about losing Timmy. Probably very normal mother thinking.

Dec 9 –Regarding our health in Japan, my Bible reading was in the Old Testament: Deuteronomy 7

v13 And He will love you and bless you and multiply you; He will also bless the fruit of your womb

v15 And the Lord will remove from you all sickness.

What about a doctor in Japan? The Lord answered:

Ps 118:8 It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in man.