A Marriage for Rebecca
Does God answer prayer? Consider this:
One year I was in India, staying in the home of a pastor who had three daughters. The oldest was named Rebecca, and she shared her room with me while I was visiting.
One evening I came back from a meeting and as I entered the bedroom I noticed that Rebecca had tears in her eyes--she had been crying. "Why are you crying, Rebecca?" I asked. Then she confided in me.
"My parents are trying to arrange my marriage. I am so frightened. So many of my friends have had arranged marriages, and I have seen what can happen. One of them I just visited in the hospital...she had been attacked by her husband."
Rebecca was a beautiful, lovely girl. She was musically talented and loved the Lord. At that point, I did not know how I would reply to her words. But then the Holy Spirit took over.
"Rebecca, are you willing for God to choose you a husband? Not your parents, not even yourself--just God?" She said "Yes". "Then I will pray with you, Rebecca, and we will give this decision to God. But do you have any preferences?"
She thought a moment, then said "I would like him to be tall, and have a mustache." That was funny to me, but she continued: "Then I want him to be, of course, a Christian...but also one who is active in church and musically talented." Then she added: "I would like for him to live out of India in some other country."
So I began the prayer like this: "Lord, Rebecca and I come before you with a need. She needs a husband. But not just ANY husband, Lord. We want you to choose him for her. You have heard her requests and desires. Now send forth you angel to draw him to her." And then I added: "Give me a dream tonight. I want to meet him. In Jesus' name we ask it. Amen."
That night I had a dream. A tall, handsome man with a mustache came to me. "Tell Rebecca about me," he said. Then he took me to his apartment. It was very small, but I noticed how neat and clean it was. I even saw the linens and his clothing packed away neatly. We went into the kitchen. Again, very small. But it had a refrigerator and an electric stove. On we went in the dream...to church. There I saw him seated on the floor, but playing a guitar and praising God. And that was all the dream.
Excitedly, when we woke up I told Rebecca about the dream. She was so excited! But then hesitated..."but there are no electric stoves in India!" "But Rebecca, you asked that he not live in India!" I reminded her.
Several months went by, and I returned home to Alaska. Then I received a letter. It was from Rebecca.
"I am getting married! A tall Indian man (with a mustache) came to visit his father in South India. While he was there, my uncle was also visiting his father, who is a preacher. They began to discuss marriage. My uncle told him that he should come to Madras and meet his niece. So he did. And he came to my father and told him he wanted to meet me--no dowry would be necessary. And so they called me into the office, and the moment I met him, we both knew!" she wrote.
And so Rebecca married the man, who was working in Kuwait.
When I returned again to India, I called Kuwait to talk to Rebecca. She was so excited: "I am SO HAPPY! He is everything I wanted--a real fine Christian man..and he IS MUSICAL! We worship the Lord together as one!"
I said to Rebecca, "Tell me about your apartment. Is it small, Rebecca?" "Yes, very small, but enough room for us."
"What about the kitchen, Rebecca? Does it have an electric stove?
There was a pause, then an excited answer: "YES! IT DOES HAVE AN ELECTRIC STOVE IN IT!"
And so, God once again proved faithful, caring, and much involved in the precious life of a lovely Indian girl named Rebecca.