The Lamp Pole Dilemma and my Answered Prayer – by Mark Finley

12476874_10209147316738925_825719190_oThroughout our nearly fifty years of ministry, my wife Teenie and I have seen God answer our prayers repeatedly. Recently we’ve experienced God answering our prayers in a major way as our new Living Hope Seventh-day Adventist Community Church nears completion: this is a faith project that has cost around $4.5 million dollars, and has been funded largely by generous donors in answer to many prayers.

Now we are at the stage of getting our occupancy permit, and soon we can officially open our doors.

Our new church facility and school of evangelism is located in Haymarket, Virginia in a quaint shopping center with lovely shops and restaurants. A few weeks ago, we had a dilemma. Up and down the street next to our new church there are a number of elegant tall lamp poles to provide light in the evenings for the community. The dilemma occurred when someone ran into one of these lamp poles with their car and destroyed it. Naturally we expected the shopping center owners would fix the pole and because of this, we didn’t think much about it. But not long after the accident we were notified that it was our church’s responsibility to replace the lamp pole. We also discovered to our surprise that we would not be given our occupancy permit until we replaced the lamp pole and had each of the street lights functioning. The problem was, where would we find a replacement lamp pole? After all, these poles may be typical for affluent neighborhoods, but it’s not like you can just go down to Lowe’s and pick up a replacement.

Immediately I began to pray. “Heavenly Father, I have no idea where to find such a lamp pole, but You do. And so I’m asking you to help me! We need to get the permits for our church so we can move forward and now this is holding us back. We don’t know what to do, please give us wisdom on how to proceed?”

Not long after, I had the idea to contact the manager of the shopping center that sits just a few hundred yards away from our church. The manager and I have become friends and I figured maybe she could point me in the right direction. When I shared my dilemma with her, she responded, “Pastor Mark, we have a vacant store in our shopping center that we have used to store different supplies. This building has one of those exact lamp poles lying on the floor. It’s brand new! We’ve been needing to get rid of that pole so we can use the room. We’d be happy if you would take it. No charge!” She then gave me the lock combination to go retrieve the pole.

Reminded once again that God cares about my life and about our needs, my heart overflowed with gratitude and thanksgiving to the Lord. Truly we serve an amazing God. Nothing is beneath Him; not even the task of helping me find a needed lamp pole for our street!

Mark Finley, Assistant to the President, General Conference

Note: To view this week’s world church prayer requests, click here!

To download & print this blog, practical application, & prayer requests, click here!

4543060842_e4fdb33047_bPractical Application: 

The Bible tells us, “Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path” (Ps. 119:105). It also tells us, “And thine ears shall hear a word behind thee, saying, This is the way, walk ye in it, when ye turn to the right hand, and when ye turn to the left” (Isa. 30:21).

No matter what obstacle you are facing; the obstacle of needing to locate a difficult lamp pole, the obstacle of lack of finances for a big project, the obstacle of disease, of despair in face of great loss, or some other impossible mountain, God has a solution. He may not show us what is around the corner, but He promises to be the Light to our path today. Let’s cast our cares upon Him and trust in His Word. And the help that we need will come just when we need it most.

Dear Heavenly Father, Not only can You help us find a difficult lamp pole, like You did for Pastor Mark Finley, but You are the Lamp for our feet and the Light to our path. Show us how to cling to You, how to trust in You, and how to stand upon Your Word. The devil has hurled a thousand obstacles and many trials across our path, but You are greater than any obstacle we could ever face. We look to You for hope, for help, for strength! In Jesus’ precious name, Amen!

Promises to Claim: Ps. 51:15