Read more by Leanne!

“I will cause the showers to come down in their season; there shall be showers of blessing.”

In November, Maun, Botswana experienced its first rain in seven months. I happened to feel those very first raindrops fall on my face as I prayed with my outreach team specifically for rain to fall in that town. If ever there were a perfect, tangible representation that God provides, this would be it. And it didn’t just happen that one time. During our four weeks in Botswana, we saw lighting and heard thunder and watched children splash and play in puddles of water. Those first sprinkles set in motion a wave of provision for the people of Botswana.

I remember on one of our very last days before heading back to Australia. I still hadn’t photographed any of our rainy days, but I knew I wanted some images to share when I got back. As I woke up on one of these final days, I looked outside my window and saw a sparse formation of clouds. “God,” I prayed, “it would be so wonderful if it could rain this morning, just so I could take a few pictures.” Sure enough, as I sat outside reading my bible, the rain began to come. I giddily got my camera and snapped some photos, feeling satisfied with the results after about fifteen minutes. And just as I stopped photographing, the rain stopped. Before nine o’clock that morning, God answered two more of my seemingly small prayers, things I had just spoken out to Him as “wouldn’t it be nice if…” thoughts. That morning, I felt so enamoured with my God. Not because I was getting things I wanted from Him, but because He was showing me His heart towards me. I felt His ginormous ear bent to hear my tiny voice, I felt His soft Father’s heart towards my simple requests.

Rain is valuable in Botswana. In fact, whoever named their currency decided that money was valuable enough to be called the very same word as the rain. As an Oregonian, I could never fully understand the African farmer’s desperate cry for rain. I can, however, relate to experiencing seasons of financial drought.

Just over a year ago, God started speaking to me about coming to Australia to be involved in missions. At the time, I had a five thousand dollar medical bill and no way to pay it. “You want to provide for my medical bill AND to get me to Australia… in just a matter of months?” I asked God. “I’m pretty sure that would be impossible.”

I could feel His smile as I landed on that last word of my sentence. “Exactly,” He said.

In my own strength and in my own perspective of the world, it would have been impossible. But not for God. One simple phone call to the hospital, and in a matter of minutes I went from a five thousand dollar weight on my shoulders to learning that my bill had been 100% forgiven. That percentage rang in my mind over the next few months, and, sure enough, I watched God provide 100% of exactly everything I needed to get to Australia. Donations and funds were pouring in like drops of rain.

It’s been like this for the past year, and the rain hasn’t stopped. As 2017 began, renewing my visa, flying back home, and planning a wedding were on my mind. I’m still amazed that the money for all of these things has been provided. God keeps hearing my prayers and keeps pouring out from His infinite resources. I’m amazed because He loves me enough to do this.

Yes, living in faith like this can be a challenge. I have learnt so much over the past year and there is still so much more to learn. I’m learning to have security not in money but in the God that holds all resources in His hands. I’ve seen Him provide time and time again. I saw it first in my medical bill and I’ve continued to see it, even down to the most wonderful feeling of raindrops on my face. I want to encourage you that our God provides. He hears, and He provides. His ear is not too dull to hear and His arm is not too short to save. He leans down to hear us and He reaches down to love us. I’m so thankful that I am able to serve this wonderful God.

I’ve just committed to stay here at Youth With a Mission in Perth, Australia for the next two years! That means that I’m continuing the journey of trusting God to provide for all of my financial needs. If you’d like to talk more about this and how you can be part of it, please email me! If you’d like to stay tuned on what I’ll be doing over the next two years, click here to sign up to receive updates by email.

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we are the rileys

We are a newlywed couple serving in Christian missions.

God has called us to Youth With a Mission in Perth, Australia. We have a heart for the city of Perth and for reaching Aboriginal people here in Western Australia. We would also love to see transformation and mobilisation through partnering with local initiatives in other nations in short-term outreach trips. Together, we have a passion for mentorship and discipleship of young people. Chris is gifted in meeting practical needs, and Leanne has a big desire for the sphere of Media & Communications.

This is our blog, a place to share what God is doing as well as things we learn as we journey through the adventure of following Jesus!