You would have thought that after Part One, we would not have any reason to doubt. Yet, here we were the next day, starting to feel a bit down because of our circumstances, despite the absolutely incredible miraculous provision God had given to us on the previous two days of not only putting a roof over our head and giving us food to eat, but blowing us out of the water with ridiculous generosity and favor.
Anyways, it was the first morning of the conference, which took place at this beautiful hotel on the Marina in Mazatlán. You see, Ryan and I and several others from YWAM San José were staying at the YWAM Mazatlán base, which was about a 20 minute drive from the hotel where the conference was going on. So we would all pile into a van each morning at 8AM, and then we would spend the whole day at the hotel for the conference, and then around 10PM we’d go back to the base, sleep, and do it all over again the next day.
Of course, this meant that during the day we had to find some way to eat, since everyone who was staying at the hotel was on an all-inclusive meal plan, and those of us staying at the base were not. So, our first big challenge presented it itself at lunch time on day one, when we realized that we had about 20 dollars to budget over the next five days for food, and that the only thing around us was expensive hotel food, and restaurants that place themselves near expensive hotels. We were feeling pretty hopeless now, questioning why most of the people around us had no worries about whether or not they would eat, yet we pretty much had no option that would feed us sufficiently for the rest of our trip. We wondered if we had done something wrong, like maybe we didn’t try hard enough to fundraise? Maybe it was our fault that no money had come our way before the trip? We were trying our best not to let the circumstances dictate how we felt, and we were not forgetting all that God had done in the previous few days. We reflected on His promise that we are more valuable than the sparrows, and they don’t ever have to worry about whether or not they will eat – so we definitely shouldn’t.
So, with a bit of heaviness on our heart, yet gratitude and hope still fighting to hang onto God’s promises, we headed up to the hotel room of a guy we had met when we got off the plane in Mazatlán. He was a friend of some of the people from YWAM México City, and he had given us his extra room key and told us that we could come hang out in his room whenever we had break times during the conference, just to have a place to relax. This in itself was a crazy, divine provision. We went up to drop off our day bag, and we decided to sit on the sofa for a few minutes and pray. We thanked God for how He had provided so much and been so generous with us in the last couple of days, and we asked Him for wisdom in how to spend what we had left, as well as to lead us to a place where we could eat for a low price.
We headed out from the hotel, and started walking down the main road in hopes of finding some cheap food. We entered the first convenience store we saw, which was about 15 minutes later, and got some fruit and yogurt. We asked the cashier if she knew of any places where we could eat that were lower than $5 meals, since all we had seen so far charged an average of $10. She directed us to a place where we could get tacos for 15 pesos (or $1 USD) each. The treasure in the rough had been discovered. We were ecstatic! The only issue – they only accepted cash, and we didn’t have any.
We returned to the hotel with lifted spirits and partially filled tummies for the afternoon session activities, and then went back to our new friend’s hotel room for a little break before dinner. We found out how rad this dude was, and had an awesome time getting to know him. Then, when we were leaving the room, we saw a stack of $20 bills with a note next to where we had left our backpack. It seemed as though it had appeared out of nowhere. Ryan grabbed the backpack, unsure of where the money had come from, and started to walk towards the door. Our new friend told him, “that’s for you to take” and we were both taken aback. “Wait, what?!” He said, “Yeah, it’s for you guys.” And after we had gotten over the initial shock, we started telling him about how a few hours earlier, we had sat on his sofa (he hadn’t been there) and prayed for miraculous provision. He had no idea of our need and shared that God had spoken to him about giving to us.
Once again, God had proven Himself faithful in a crazy way. We now had the cash we needed to eat! We thanked Jesus for taking care of us again, and we also reflected on how we were not the only ones at the conference who had needs. We knew that there were people from our own base who didn’t have food or money. God spoke to us about giving from what we had received to one of our friends, and we prayed that God would multiply it so it would be enough for him to eat for the rest of the week. It was so cool to be able to bless someone else because of another person’s obedience to give to us, and to continue the spirit of generosity that was passed to us. There was much more to come.
Ryan had to go to worship practice, so I decided to round up my fellow YWAM San Josérs to tell them the good news about the cheap taco place, and set out for dinner. There was a group of about eight of us, and we walked with high hopes and cash in hand, toward the place Ryan and I had found earlier – only to find out it had closed 5 minutes earlier. We felt a little disappointed but decided to keep walking, and actually ended up finding a little tiny family-run restaurant. It was totally out of place amongst the high-end places surrounding it, but it was perfect. They served us some of the best homemade tacos, loaded quesadillas called “Sincronizadas,” and tamales we’d ever had, and we only spent $2-$3 each. We couldn’t believe it was real.
Ryan was súper feliz when I brought back his food. He couldn’t believe it either. This was a day that we would never forget. And it wasn’t about the money or the food. It was about the deep revelation of God loving us in such a personal and relevant way that day. He was showing us that He saw our every need, and as we walked with Him and and made our requests known before Him, He answered. Indeed, His greatness and His faithfulness are more than we ever expected. Depending on Him is hard because we have to release control, and trust Him to be who He says He is, which can be really scary. But there’s so much freedom and joy in it! There is honestly nothing better.
Yet, once again, we had no idea that this was not the end of His faithful affection.
Part Three would blow our minds.