For the rest of us it would mean seeing our roads destroyed by people who just got their CDL long enough to drive a water truck for a gas company. I could handle the terrible roads if I didn’t get behind one ever day driving 35 in a 50 that ought to be a 70 anyway.
I’m not a landowner. I have always wanted to be but just haven’t been able to put it together. My house is on half an acre and the church is on rented property so I wouldn’t be a good guy to play monopoly with. However I was blown away when a wealthy man asked me to come speak to him one day in his office. He sat me down across from him and explained how there would be wells soon on his property and that he wanted to give some of the profits to our ministry.
That got my attention. He is somebody that really has a heart for the poor and had always loved how we serve the community through the food bank warehouse. So in 2003, he took me out to the spot where they would one day dig the first of many wells and we called it blessed land. He had his lawyers draw up paperwork to give me a percentage of the gas money and make me a stockholder in his company should he sell the business and the land. For the next three years I made it my business to hope and pray for the day the well went up.
Every time a missionary would come from overseas I would take them out to the spot and tell them the amazing story of what this benevolent man was doing for us. The well finally came and after some months they hit gas and hit it big. I announced to the church that our well had hit gas and we all celebrated. The problem we would find out several months later was that they hadn’t dug the lines to the well and it would be another disappointing year before the gas was flowing.
We prayed against the terrible delay. We had several nighttime services at the very well site where we prayed and believed God for the day it would all finally happen. Having a steady income stream into an outreach church like ours would change everything. After an entire year the line came through and then after another six-month delay he finally got his first check.
Did you notice I said “he” and not “we?” Tragically for us, the very month we expected to see our first profit from the wells, he left the church and discontinued contact with any of us. I eventually got a certified letter from his lawyers telling me to forget about the last certified letter from the lawyers. I no longer would have any part in gas profits and to have a nice day. It was difficult advice to follow, that day. I couldn’t believe it.
So here I am, two years later, driving thirty-five miles an hour in a 50 mile an hour zone that should be a 70 in the first place. The inexperienced driver of the gas company water truck in front of me apparently got his license in a Cracker Jack box. What used to be a road is more like a lunar landscape, ruined beneath the weight of the profit from all those gas wells. It was difficult to get to my destination and do you want to know where I was going? Back to the gas well site. You wanna know why? To pray for it.
You see, me and the guys on my team never stopped praying for that gas money to reach that man. We still are committed to pray for his prosperity. He might of broke his promise to us but we never broke our promise to pray and believe God that those wells produce and produce and produce. The bottom line is that this man never owed us any of that money. What he promised was out of his generosity and certainly not out of obligation. He’s a good man and does a lot of good things for a lot of people. Just because he doesn’t help us doesn’t mean he’s a bad guy.
It was a terrible disappointment for me to be sure, but that’s all it was. Disappointment is not the same as betrayal. A real grown up attitude I wish a lot more of us Christians had is that disappointment does not give us the right to be any less committed as Christians.
As I slowly hit another huge hole in the torn up asphalt behind that water truck, I considered my own life. For me, any other way of thinking is a road I’m not interested in traveling down.
Behold, happy is the man whom God correcteth: therefore despise not thou the chastening of the Almighty: Job 5:17
Contact the Brewer @ www.FreshFromTheBrewer.com