I was on my way to visit the children in a neighbouring country. It was the half term break at their school and I would spend that time with them out of school.
I had arrived at the airport in plenty of time for my flight and I was soon in the departure lounge waiting. I had nearly 2 hours in hand so I began to gaze around the see who else was there. Maybe another parent of kids at school was on the same flight. I didn’t see anyone I knew but I did notice another foreign family there – mum, dad and two children. As I waited and watched, I noticed that every so often an airline official would go across to them and chat for a while, then leave them. After watching for about 30 minutes I decided I would engage them in conversation (or if you know me, then you’d say I was being nosey!).
I walked across to where they were sitting and asked them if everything was okay. I explained that I lived locally and could speak the language and perhaps I could help out if there was a problem.
And there was. They had been travelling back to India via Dhaka from Rome and had been refused entry into India because of visa difficulties. The airlines had flown them back to Dhaka and were threatening to fly them back to Rome, their point of origin. If they could get new visas for India then they could proceed there, but to do that they had to enter Bangladesh and to do that they would need $50 per passenger to buy a visa on arrival. Their problem was that they had no cash and they could not get to an ATM to withdraw any.
Well, I said, I can help you. Here is $100 that you can use for one of you to enter Bangladesh and get money for the others to enter and then you can get your Indian visas. They began asking questions about how could they pay it back and I assured them that they needn’t bother – just pass it on to someone else who needs it sometime. They then said something that really floored me.
“You are the answer to our prayers. We are devotees of Lord Krishna and we prayed and asked him for help. And you have helped us in answer to our prayers.” “That’s interesting,” I replied, “I am a devotee of Jesus Christ and I believe that He led me to help you.”
I have no idea what was going on here, but I do believe that God was working in this situation. I can’t explain how or why He worked through people who do not acknowledge Him as Lord, but God delights in smashing our preconceptions of Him and the way He ‘should’ work.
Isaiah knew what he was talking about when he said, “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” Isaiah 55:9.
Written by our global worker, Susan