Part 5 - What does the Lord need an engineer for?
“I wonder why God wasted the first 27 years of my life with all that engineering?” Peter often thought while in Bible college. He had an excellent grounding in motor engineering and aviation engineering, and there he was, learning Greek, Hebrew and Hermeneutics. It seemed a bit of a waste...
Upon accepting the job of organising CfaN’s transportation department, Peter and Vangi once again packed up the family. This time they settled in Johannesburg, South Africa at the ministry headquarters and Peter set to work. After only four months with CfaN a noticeable transformation occurred in the ministry’s transit operations and Peter was given the position of General Coordinator of the ministry.
It was in this capacity that he found himself summoned to New York city to represent CfaN before a panel of American engineers. The group had manufactured some defective equipment that cost the ministry a great deal of money. Feeling “out of his depth” Peter kept quiet for the majority of the proceedings, but quickly noted the faulty premise of the committee. Eventually, he raised his hand and politely explained the inconsistency. The meeting was abruptly called to a close, and a solution to the issue was soon achieved in favour of CfaN.
Peter exclaimed to Vangi, “Now I understand what the Lord was doing all along, training me in engineering, running a business, working with technical teams, then preaching and singing and teaching. Here at CfaN, I’m using all of it!”
That’s the way of it when you follow the call of God on your life. He uses everything we have, and surprises us with what He finds useful as He uses us to build the Kingdom. So often, we think it’s only preaching and evangelism that God needs, but He has a place for each one of us. He knows us completely, and you’ll find your passions and interests woven into God’s plans for your life, in unexpected and deeply satisfying ways.
What parallels do you see in Peter’s story and the story of Joseph in Genesis 39:2-6? What do the outcomes of these two narratives tell us about God’s attitude toward excellent work?
Genesis 39:2 begins by saying “The Lord was with Joseph...” What kind of impact do you think this had on the way in which Joseph approached his work? How do you think God’s presence impacted Peter? How does it affect your daily work to know that the Lord is with you?
The fourth chapter of John tells the story of Jesus and the woman at the well. Jesus’ words to the woman indicated that he knew everything about her and she was amazed. What comes to mind when you meditate on the thought “Jesus knows everything about me”? How does this influence your perspective on God’s plan for your life?
In John 4:39-42 the woman at the well ends up telling many people in her city about Jesus and they come to believe in him. How do you think Jesus’ knowledge of the woman’s evangelistic ability influenced his decision to speak with her in the first place?
2 And the Lord was with Joseph, and he was a prosperous man; and he was in the house of his master the Egyptian.
3 And his master saw that the Lord was with him, and that the Lord made all that he did to prosper in his hand.
4 And Joseph found grace in his sight, and he served him: and he made him overseer over his house, and all that he had he put into his hand.
5 And it came to pass from the time that he had made him overseer in his house, and over all that he had, that the Lord blessed the Egyptian’s house for Joseph’s sake; and the blessing of the Lord was upon all that he had in the house, and in the field.
6 And he left all that he had in Joseph’s hand; and he knew not ought he had, save the bread which he did eat. And Joseph was a goodly person, and well favoured.
John 4: 4-26
4 And he must needs go through Samaria.
5 Then cometh he to a city of Samaria, which is called Sychar, near to the parcel of ground that Jacob gave to his son Joseph.
6 Now Jacob’s well was there. Jesus therefore, being wearied with his journey, sat thus on the well: and it was about the sixth hour.
7 There cometh a woman of Samaria to draw water: Jesus saith unto her, Give me to drink.
8(For his disciples were gone away unto the city to buy meat.)
9 Then saith the woman of Samaria unto him, How is it that thou, being a Jew, askest drink of me, which am a woman of Samaria? for the Jews have no dealings with the Samaritans.
10 Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water.
11 The woman saith unto him, Sir, thou hast nothing to draw with, and the well is deep: from whence then hast thou that living water?
12 Art thou greater than our father Jacob, which gave us the well, and drank thereof himself, and his children, and his cattle?
13 Jesus answered and said unto her, Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again:
14 But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.
15 The woman saith unto him, Sir, give me this water, that I thirst not, neither come hither to draw.
16 Jesus saith unto her, Go, call thy husband, and come hither.
17 The woman answered and said, I have no husband. Jesus said unto her, Thou hast well said, I have no husband:
18 For thou hast had five husbands; and he whom thou now hast is not thy husband: in that saidst thou truly.
19 The woman saith unto him, Sir, I perceive that thou art a prophet.
20 Our fathers worshipped in this mountain; and ye say, that in Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship.
21 Jesus saith unto her, Woman, believe me, the hour cometh, when ye shall neither in this mountain, nor yet at Jerusalem, worship the Father.
22 Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews.
23 But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him.
24 God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.
25 The woman saith unto him, I know that Messias cometh, which is called Christ: when he is come, he will tell us all things.
26 Jesus saith unto her, I that speak unto thee am he.
John 4: 39-42
39 And many of the Samaritans of that city believed on him for the saying of the woman, which testified, He told me all that ever I did.
40 So when the Samaritans were come unto him, they besought him that he would tarry with them: and he abode there two days.
41 And many more believed because of his own word;
42 And said unto the woman, Now we believe, not because of thy saying: for we have heard him ourselves, and know that this is indeed the Christ, the Saviour of the world.