The backseat giggles warmed my heart. While my husband climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro with Compassion International, I savored extra days with our two sponsored children. Hilda (six) and Goodluck (five) shared a seat and provided entertainment as we bounced along the roads in Tanzania.
Following visits to their modest homes and a lunch of chicken and rice, our group of eight squeezed into a vehicle to travel to our next destination. I wanted to bless the children with a new pair of shoes and an article of clothing, so with my guide’s permission, we headed toward the local market. It was time to shop.
The vibrant colors and dense crowds signaled our arrival. The marketplace buzzed with activity and unfamiliar Swahili. As we approached the vendors, my Tanzanian guide turned to me and said, “I need to hold your hand.” His expression conveyed the seriousness behind his statement as he took my hand in his.
Concerned for my safety in this busy public arena, my guide offered his hand in love and I accepted it in faith. Without question or hesitation, I trusted. He knew I needed to fit in and his gesture provided validation. My guide became my protector as we moved through the market, hand in hand.
When unforeseen dangers loom, our Protector whispers, I need to hold your hand. God sees the complete picture. He is already present in our future: our next minutes, hours, and all our tomorrows. He sees what we cannot and offers His hand in protection.
Throughout God’s Holy pages, brave women stepped out in faith grasping God’s protecting hand. Hannah prayed for a miracle, Abigail orchestrated an intervention, and Ruth gleaned in foreign fields. With God as their Protector, Deborah charged into battle, Rahab hid the spies, and Queen Esther approached the King. Their faith tethered them to God and they proceeded, hand in hand.
When we enter spiritual battles against an enemy who seeks to destroy, we are never alone. Though darkness, despair, and doubt threaten, our confidence rests in God’s protecting hands.
Though I walk in the midst of trouble, you preserve my life; you stretch out your hand against the wrath of my enemies, and your right hand delivers me.
Psalm 138:7 (NIV)
Inside the market stalls, I moved to the background and watched through joy-filled eyes. The children stared wide-eyed at the display of clothes and shoes. Goodluck’s aunt helped him select a pink shirt while Hilda and her mother chose a lovely red dress. Both ladies preferred dress shoes for the children — a sturdy, more practical choice.
Bartering completed and shopping bags in hand, we returned to the vehicle. Beaming faces filled my heart with precious memories and praises of protection.
Six days later, the Compassion Team returned from their mountaintop experience at 19,341 feet. Pictures revealed the beauty from the top of Africa as they shared stories of God’s protecting hand throughout their journey. Deep in my heart, I cherished the memories from my ground level view of Africa: bright smiles, easy giggles, warm hugs, and new shoes. All made possible by God’s protecting hands.
I need to hold your hand. When I hear those words in a holy whisper or in a busy Tanzanian market, I know my Protector is near. He offers His hand in love; I accept it by faith. Together, we proceed, hand in hand.
So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
Isaiah 41:10 (NIV)
Though darkness, despair, and doubt threaten, our confidence rests in God’s protecting hands. -Krista Lynn Campbell: Click To Tweet