I woke up this morning with this song on my heart. "Lord, I Praise You" by Amy Nobles. This was our theme song at the girls retreat that the Lord so sweetly placed upon the heart of my friend Natalie West. Natalie spoke in our last session and in preparation to speak, she shared this story with me that she wanted to share with the girls.
On March 15, 2004, five missionaries were headed home from a long days work in Iraq when suddenly they were surrounded and unexpectedly attacked. All missionaries went home to be with Jesus except a woman named Carrie McDonnall. Two of those missionaries that died were friends of our student ministry, Larry and Jean Elliot and one was Carrie's husband. Carrie was was shot over 20 times and was rushed to the US while being in a drug induced coma. Upon waking up in the hospital she heard a choir. She kept asking for people to search the hospital to find this choir and they fell short in finding them. Finally, Carrie realized that the Lord had been singing this song over her and found Amy Nobles, a gifted worhsip leader, to come and write the song out for her. Click here to get the full story and listen to the song.
Natalie played the song for me and I thought then and there that Amber Burger, our worship leader for the retreat, needed to learn it. Amber learned the song and then right before she came to our retreat she went to a woman's conference where God divinely placed Carrie McDonnall to speak and Amber first hand heard the story straight from her lips. Amber so overjoyed, called me and I was overwhelmed how the Lord set that up.
We may never quite understand why the Lord would allow missionaries to die, especially the beloved Elliots. Upon hearing this story we were able to see how divine God's ways are. How He threads events together. How incredible was it to worship to a song over the weekend that God, Himself, wrote. Those missionaries never knew that they were headed over to Iraq to go home to Jesus, in order to reach 140 girls and women at a retreat in Houston, Texas and thousands of others across the nation.