Specific prayer and an Italian named Sylvia:

I was done with my shift and had decided to stay for a while to work on some reading for a class I was taking. It was the Spring of 2010 and I was finishing up an AMAZING 15-week course called: “Perspectives on the World Christian Movement” (more information on this incredible class is included at the end of this story). At the beginning of the class we were told about a paper required later in the course for those taking the class for college or seminary credit. There were several options for the project and early in the course I had chosen the one that involved interviewing someone from another culture. Italian of course, was my culture of choice. As the deadline for the paper drew near, I began praying for God to provide me with someone young (in their 20’s or 30’s), born and raised in Italy, non-evangelical and preferably female whom I could interview for my paper.

It was less than two weeks after I began praying for this provision when I found myself seated at the bar area after my shift, working on the reading for the course. It was nothing short of divine providence.

  1. I was still at work but not working,
  2. I was in the cafe and close enough to hear,
  3. with no other customers in line, my co-worker happened to ask where she was from,
  4. though I was reading I overheard,
  5. she happened to be Italian,
  6. she was staying in Cotati for a month more (she had come for a total of three months to work on her Ph. D. at SSU)
  7. she stopped by my store at just the right day and time
  8. she was all the things I had been praying for
  9. and she was willing and available to be interviewed
I introduced myself as she stood near the bar waiting for her drink. She wasn’t in a hurry so we chatted for a while that first afternoon. I explained my need to interview someone from another culture for my paper and when she agreed to help, we made plans to meet again soon. We met on two other occasions before she had to return to Italy. She graciously answered each of the many questions I was required to ask as well as many of my own. Unfortunately I don’t have her contact info in Italy but would I really be surprised if we meet again someday?
How sweet are the ripe bananas that come in the form of answered prayers!

About Perspectives:

I can’t recommend Perspectives enough to everyone who is a Christ-follower. The class is offered across the nation and in dozens of countries around the world. Here is a brief summary as found on the website:

“Perspectives helps believers from all walks of life see how they can get threaded into God’s story of redeeming people from every tribe, tongue, and nation to Himself. From Genesis to the prophets, Jesus Christ to the early church, and Constantine to today, you will see how God has been moving, how the global Church has responded, and what the greatest needs in world evangelization remain today. It isn’t a class about missions, but a course on how every believer can be intimately woven into the story of God using His people to be a blessing to all the people’s of the earth.”


3 thoughts on “Sylvia

  1. Thanks Hollie! I’m so blessed to hear how God is using these stories to encourage and challenge others. I so hope it works out for you to take Perspectives! It is so neat to learn how God throughout history and in every corner of the world is making His name known among the nations as He draws together a people from every tribe, tongue and nation to be His very own. One of the coolest parts is how He invites all of us to join Him in His mission. I can’t wait to see what plans He has in store for you!


  2. LOVE it Hil! Totally taking Perspectives very soon- can’t wait! Thank you for sharing, I really needed to hear this tonight. I’m so encouraged by your patience and faithfulness to pray for very specific things from our God. He is more than happy to show Himself great in the details of our lives! Love you girl! Keep the bananas coming 😉


    • I am SOOO excited for you to take Perspectives over the summer! We will definitely need to skype lots then so I can hear all about the ways it will stir your heart, mind, hands and feet and to be reminded of the lessons/readings/speakers… that did the same for me!


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