Barbara (pictured on far left) is a beautiful soul and a hard-working member of the Wahiawa Church of Christ. We’ve asked her to share her story of how God brought her to Hawaii and placed in her heart a desire to devote her time and talents to the work in Wahiawa. Below is her account.
After a particularly trying time in Virginia, I became eligible to transfer to a new duty station. My Branch Manager sent out a list of 200+ places that needed Logistics Majors. I was to choose 25 places I would like to go and 5 places I did not want to go. Having no one I needed to consult with, the process was simple:
Where did I want to go?
I was upset when I received my next duty station – it was Fort Bliss, Texas. It was on my list of places I did not want to go. I called my Branch Manager to inquire what had happened. “Did you even look at my list?” I asked. “Or did you and my supervisor place me in a hard-to-fill location to mutually benefit your own careers?” I was suspicious.
“I am trying to help you out. You are a senior major who has not had a key developmental job yet.” He responded. I asked, “You’re telling me that of the 25 places I wanted to go none of them have a key developmental job?” He reiterated he was trying to “help” me and that he would look for options. “Leave it alone,” I told him. “I will take the assignment.” I was afraid any change may be worse because I had questioned his motives.
That day my unit had a prayer lunch. On the way I told my friend what had happened. At the program they asked if anyone had a prayer request. My friend elbowed me. I did not want to ask for prayers for my duty station because other people had asked for prayers for cancer and other serious issues. My friend persisted, so I raised my hand.
I asked God, “Please place me where you need me.”
Two days later, my branch manager called, saying “Barbara, I have a possible change to your duty location.” I was angry because I thought it would be worse than Fort Bliss. I said, “Didn’t I tell you to leave it be?” He said, “An assignment in Hawaii came open out of the blue. It is an key developmental job and you would be perfect for it.”
I’ve wanted to go to Hawaii before but did not get to. I went to talk to my friend about the change in my duty station and she reminded me of my prayer request.
It hit me that the change in my duty location was nothing short of providence.
I arrived in Hawaii on Monday, the 28th of March, 2016. I went straight to work. During my first week, a co-worker invited me to lunch and gave me a short tour around the area. We drove by the Wahiawa Church of Christ building. That Saturday I got an address that I thought was the blue building I saw earlier in the week. Sunday morning I punched the address into my GPS and headed out. It took me to a private home at the top of a hill. I was lost.
I called my co-worker and asked if he remembered the blue church we drove by. He told me most churches were on California Ave. I drove far up the road before I found the blue building with rusting roof. It was 10am and there were a couple cars in the gravel parking lot. I parked and went up to the door. It was locked with a small sign that stated the service would be at 11am. The late start time was a little strange to me. I considered finding another congregation.
Instead, I decided to eat breakfast and return at 11am. When I returned to the building another vehicle was in the driveway and the doors were open. I found out the congregation consisted of 8 people and one was out of the state at the time. The building was in urgent need of repair. I am good at renovating properties. I have a strong faith and knowledge of God’s word.
I felt like the Lord had directed my steps to the Wahiawa Church of Christ.
I’ve been attending the Wahiawa Church of Christ since that day Sunday, April 3rd, 2016. I’ve been working with the other members to grow the church and renovate the building. By God’s grace we’ve been making steady progress on both fronts!