“God is not surprised.” And those words sank into my soul. They were a light to hold onto, a truth to lean into. I needed it.
Micah’s mom said these words as she prayed over Micah’s thumb, which he had tried to cut off hours before.
How I Found Out
“It’s for you.” My friend Genesis and I were standing under the awning of the coffee shop a few blocks from my house, trying to stay out of the rainy season downpour. She handed me her phone. I was confused.
You know something is very wrong when you receive a phone call on your friend’s phone. I was even more confused when I saw Kristi’s, one of the Lead Missionaries, name on the screen.
“Micah cut his finger on the table saw. He’s ok, but I took him to the ER. He wanted to talk to you”
“There’s blood all over the floor.” It was Micah now, “I don’t want you to be freaked out when you get home.”
“How bad is it? Will you need to get stitches?” I asked, trying to process the information.
“We’ll see.” he said, and that was the end of the call.
Everything would be okay, I thought to myself as I finished the slog to our house through the rain. He’ll get some stitches and all will be right as rain.
I was glued to my phone that afternoon, waiting for any updates about the ER visit. I cleaned the blood off the floor and started cleaning everything in the house. I stress clean. About half an hour later my phone buzzed. It was a text from Micah.
“Tip of my thumb may not make it… Happy birthday!”
That did not sound good, not good at all. In fact that sounded a lot worse than getting a “cut” and a lot worse than I had initially imagined. Well this is great God, Micah might lose part of his thumb right before his birthday?
Two hours and one stress-cleaned-house later Micah and Kristi were standing at the gate.
“We got him stitched up and some pain medication.” Kristi said as Micah held up his bandaged left hand. I was flooded with relief.
“We leave tomorrow at 4 am for Tegucigalpa.”
“What?” I looked at Micah. Why did we need to go to the capital?
“I have to get surgery.”
“What?” I still didn’t understand what was happening. He had his stitches, everything was good.
“I cut through the bone and almost cut through the nail. They put two stitches to keep it secure, but they need to put a pin in it. I might still lose the tip of my thumb.”
“There is a surgeon in Teguc.” Kristi explained, “He’s done really good work for us in the past. He says he can see you tomorrow morning.”
A 6 hour drive, surgery, and who knows how much in medical bills– sounds like a perfect way to spend Micah’s birthday.
And that night, when we talked to our parents about the surgery, Micah’s mom said those words “God is not surprised.”
One Year Ago
Micah had said those exact words to me over a year ago when a worldwide pandemic had crashed economies and shattered plans. Somehow in the midst of a crisis we had been called to the mission field. It had been easy to say yes before a pandemic when things felt certain, but it felt impossible when disaster struck.
How would we fundraise? When could we move? Would Honduras even let us come?
When I asked “Do you think we should still go?”
Micah simply replied, “God is not surprised, he knew about Covid before he called us and still he called us.”
God is not surprised by pandemics.
He’s not surprised by medical emergencies.
He’s not surprised by accidents or injuries.
He’s not surprised by natural disasters.
He is not surprised.
My God Cares
My God knows, and so often I forget that he has always known.
I was surprised, shocked even when I got the call that Micah was at the ER. But God knew. He knew our disaster before it happened and had already taken care of it. He had lived into our tomorrow and had already carried us through.
I held onto those words as we packed that night, as we woke up at 3 am to go on our trip, as we waited at the hospital, as Micah went in for surgery.
Something as small as a tip of a thumb, God cares. Micah kept his thumb. He was 2 mm away from losing it, but God– and that’s all I can say about that.
The story is far from over. The war we are waging feels so very real. We still have months of recovery ahead of us, and Micah won’t be able to work fully until mid September. But I know that my God stands beside me, and he goes before me making ways in the wasteland and streams in the desert.