The Unexpected Gift

by Jen, former YWAM Madison staff

Jen YWAM missionary

Jen – YWAM missionary

“Here, this is for you!” exclaimed the DTS student as she lovingly handed me her most prized possession.

Coming from an Amish background, I’ve never been one for technology or getting the latest thing. When email first came out I thought that it was ridiculous and I would never need it. Then laptops came out and I wasn’t about to jump on that bandwagon just for the sake of being like everyone else!

But the more I’ve gotten involved in mission work the more I’ve grown to see the need for technology as a necessary, not frivolous, thing. So, for three or four years I prayed for a laptop, putting that request in newsletters and telling people about my need. Unfortunately, there was no laptop on the horizon and I definitely wasn’t able to afford one.

One night would change my life forever! I was on staff with the Children at Risk DTS and we were having a Christmas party. But this was not your typical Christmas party! Instead of buying gifts for each other, we were going to ask God what to give each other — and it had to be something we already owned.

I struggled as I thought about whether to give away my precious shoes that I had just gotten on an outreach to China. I wanted it to be a sacrifice but souvenirs are not easy for me to part with because of their sentimental value.

Amidst the students and staff, there was an explosion of giving — a favorite sweatshirt, some jewelry, a hat and some cash. But nothing could have prepared me for what happened next. One of the students felt like God was telling her to give a large item, an expensive one that was precious to her–her new Macbook. Surprised, she talked to a classmate for confirmation without telling her the item she was thinking about. Her friend looked at her and said, “I think that God is saying to give your laptop to Jen!”

With the confirmation she needed, this obedient student headed towards me and handed over her laptop! My jawed dropped as I asked her again and again if she was sure about this gift! I was in shock and so moved, almost to the point of tears! We hugged as I took the computer that was a huge answer to prayer. The amazing thing is that I don’t remember ever sharing this need with the class. But God knew my need.

Faith & finances - Jen & laptop

Jen and her shiny red laptop!

The laptop has been a huge blessing to me. I’ve been able to keep in better contact with family and friends, do Power Point (Keynote) presentations, work from anywhere, put together amazing newsletters and much more! I’m so grateful for this unexpected way that God provided for me.

And every time I use my shiny red laptop I think about God’s goodness to me and one of the best Christmas presents ever!