Learning to Obey God

by Joel Ramshaw

written 2018, happened 2014

For about a month before this, I had been having a vision in my head that kept repeating itself. I was a woman who was in deep despair as if she was trapped in a pit of darkness and had no hope whatsoever and nowhere to turn. I kept seeing this vision every couple of days for a month. I felt a huge weight along with this, as if I was going to have a major assignment from God come up.

One day in 2014 I had an especially challenging product we were tasked to make at work. We export this to the Japanese and the boards have to be just perfect and spotless in every aspect. I was in charge of the finishing and packaging of this product and it is a tremendous responsibility to make sure everything is perfect. After coming home from the 12-hr shift I was feeling like a hero having everything done right. Unexpectedly, just as I was about to turn toward the road my trailer is on I heard God says “there is your assignment” as I passed a lady in a wheelchair. I kind of groaned inside, being a person who hates surprises and the unknown. After pulling into my driveway, rather than go into my house, I walked toward her down the street praying and asking God what I was supposed to do. I thought maybe he would want me to speak healing to her and he may work a miracle. I did not receive an answer, except that I need to talk to her. She was talking with a friend and seemed to be doing fine. I felt awkward, being an introvert, just randomly walking up and conversing for no reason. After a few minutes of small talk I started to walk away just from self-consciousness and feeling like it was weird talking to a stranger for no reason and I may be creeping them out. Immediately the Spirit said “don’t go” but I was getting mad now because God was not telling me what to do or what to say, so I kept walking back to my trailer, justifying myself with excuses and human thoughts, saying to myself I would just pray inside for a few minutes for direction and then could go back out to her when I knew what to do. Immediately the phone rang and it was my Grandfather calling. As I talked with him I felt the disobedience I had done to God in my spirit, it felt like death and decay and was like a burning sensation, but it was too late now because it would be super-disrespectful to hang up on him for no reason. My excuse that I could “just go inside for a few minutes and then go back out” to her was now out the window and I was stuck. She was already gone by the time I went back outside. I suddenly realized that this lady in the wheelchair was who the vision was referring to, of the woman in total despair.

I felt a call to go on a three day fast of repentance when this occurred. It seemed like the chance to help her was long gone and I would never see her again, but believe it or not, once the fast was done, I actually saw her a second time. I was so thankful that God had given me another chance at this.

After talking to her for a little bit I asked how life was going. She mentioned her power and heating were both turned off because she was unable to pay the bill. This was in the fall and it was already starting to get cold, I could not imagine an old lady like this going to sleep with no heating. She was in need to go to the Friendship Centre but no one would take her there. I was able to drive her there so she could get her paperwork sorted out with the government and connect with a support worker to help her out with groceries and the like.

Now after helping out with this, God instructed me to give her $500 cash. Some people like to give groceries or essentials instead, but it is important to obey God exactly and if he says cash we need to give them cash, not just some equivalent amount in groceries or whatnot. The reason is, God is trying to test the person to see if they can handle increase and make the right choices and he can’t do that if we are already making the choice for them. I saw lotto tickets strewn on the floor and knew she was a smoker, but this is no reason to disobey. So I followed through and gave her the amount in actual cash. She wanted me to take her to spend some of it at a store, and immediately bought four packs of cigarettes. It was kind of painful knowing someone was struggling so much and seeing the money begin to be wasted, but in the end its not any of my business how they decide to make use of it. My assignment was just to give the amount with a cheerful heart and whether they spend it wisely or waste it is between them and God.

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