Hill Visit


Farming the River BedTripura Village HousesRecently I was able to visit several new garden projects in the hills. We traveled to one village by boat; the trip on the river was beautiful. We then hiked straight up a steep ridge. There, the people had arranged a wonderful lunch in a field house on the top of the ridge. Open on both sides, the view of the surrounding hills was as breathtaking as the climb had been. As we were finishing lunch, someone glimpsed a wild elephant nearby. One man raced up with his homemade muzzle-loading gun, firing to scare it away. The elephant continued to lumber through the banana trees unconcerned by our efforts. Several days later, we heard that the field house where we had eaten had been knocked over by an elephant-perhaps by the same one!

Our lives here often remind me of that trip. We are surrounded by unforeseen problems far too big for us to resolve or control. Our meetings, plans, and strategies have about as much effect as the gun had on the elephant. Fortunately our hope is not in our abilities, but in the Maker of heaven and earth: “Why do you say, O Jacob, and complain, O Israel, ‘My way is hidden from the LORD; my cause is disregarded by my God;’ Do you not know? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth.”

Fortunately God is far bigger than an elephant! In fact He is bigger than the mountains where the elephants roam. He said: “If you have faith and do not doubt… you can say to this mountain, ‘Go throw yourself into the sea,’ and it will be done. If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer.” (Matthew 21:21)