Camel drinking water from a water bottle

Camel drinking water from a water bottle

When determining what God wants us to do, we face a dilemma. As explored in an earlier post, do we wait until direction becomes crystal clear, or do we move forward in faith? Balancing listening with acting is delicate.

In a recent testimony at the First United Methodist Church of Clermont, FL, Jack Wilson shared a refreshing outlook about finding life’s call. He said after reading an Oswald Chambers’ devotion he was going to “act until God told him to stop.” Wilson’s bold initiative resulted in serving 28 years as a missionary in Africa.*

This reminds me of the Bible story in Genesis 24 where an elderly Abraham wanted to ensure his son Isaac had a good wife. Abraham took action and tasked his most trusted senior servant with searching out the perfect bride. To do so, the servant traveled to Abraham’s homeland in Northwest Mesopotamia with 10 camels loaded with gifts.

The servant moved out, trusting God for guidance. He prayed, “Lord, God of my master Abraham, make me successful today, and show kindness to my master. See I am standing beside this spring and the daughters of the townspeople are coming out to draw water” (Genesis 24:12-13 NIV).

To know which young woman to choose, he asked God to have her say that not only would she offer him water, but she also would water his camels.

“Before he had finished praying, Rebekah came out with her jar on her shoulder” (Genesis 24:15 NIV).

When the servant approached her and asked for a sip to refresh himself, she responded with great hospitality and kindness right away. She wasn’t afraid to work, saying, “I’ll draw water for your camels too until they have had enough to drink” (Genesis 24:19 NIV).

Setting out a bowl of water for a cat or dog is simple. Watering a camel is not. A camel can drink up to 20 gallons at a time, according to a Library of Congress article titled “How Much Water Does a Camel’s Hump Hold?”

If each of the 10 camels drank 20 gallons, that would be 200 gallons that had to be drawn up by hand with a rope. Rebekah had to lug many heavy jars to pour before slobbery camels, yet she had a willing heart and worked hard. When she offered this service, she had no idea gifts of golden jewelry and a marriage proposal would follow.

God requires acts of faith. Today, don’t be afraid to move forward doing the next right thing in front of you. He has awesome rewards ahead.

*If you would like to see Jack Wilson’s full testimony, click here. The introduction to his story starts at 46 minutes.

Photo Credit: A camel takes a drink in Jordan. The Middle East faces conflict if its water shortage is not tackled. Photograph: Neal Clark/Robert Harding Collection