THE ACCOUNT OF BALAAM AND HIS TALKING DONKEY shows that God often uses unique means to carry out His plans. A 20th century event was no exception—with a surprising similarity! A Brazilian pastor regularly rode his burro as he travelled to villages, and on these journeys, he often talked to his burro. After one three-hour trip the pastor finally reached the center of a village and began to preach the gospel. The local police accosted him. “You can’t preach in this town!” they insisted, but the pastor continued. When the pastor got tossed in jail he preached through the bars of his window. The police hurriedly released him. “Get out of town!”
The weary pastor agreed. I’ve preached just like God told me to, he thought. I’m ready to go home. “Well, burro,” he said. “I am so tired. I think I’ll have a sleep now.” Closing his eyes, he trusted his faithful burro to plod toward home. After a couple of hours, the pastor awakened, jarred by an uncharacteristically rough ride, and found himself riding through a field. He jammed his heels into the burro’s side and grumbled. “You are a dumb donkey. Don’t you even have sense to stay on the road?” (Numbers 22:23 “The ass turned aside out of the way and sent into a field; and Balaam smote the ass.”)
When the disgusted pastor finally returned to his church, the people were inside pleading with God to protect their pastor. “What’s this all about?” he asked. Then the people explained. A powerful rancher who hated the pastor had men hiding along the road to attack him. Coming across the field, the burro had saved his life. Everyone got back on their knees and thanked God for answered prayer.
When life’s paths are uncomfortable, and seem not to make sense, keep trusting God. “As for God, his way is perfect: the word of the LORD is tried: he is a buckler to all those that trust in him: (Psalm 18:30).
Lucinda J. Rollings
Cathedral Press Bulletin #2072