Many years ago, God made me a promise.

It has not been fulfilled yet.

This week, as I finished praying with someone in need I got to my feet and turned around to leave, only to find someone else waiting for me. I greeted her and we chatted for a few seconds. Then I asked her how I could pray with her. But she refused my offer.

“I want to pray for you,’ she replied.

I was touched. I had shared a need during the short healing service that had just ended, and she had waited for me to finish ministering to another in order to pray for me.

So we prayed together.

And her words shook me. For the promise God had made me all those years ago was repeated in her prayer. It was a reassurance and it warmed my heart.

But sometimes, we don’t quite believe enough. What if I had heard wrong? What if I thought this was a promise God had made me because I wanted it to be? What if I had said something earlier that had ‘made’ her pray that way?

A few days later, in the sermon on Sunday a comment was made that was just one of many. It was not the main point – in fact, it was almost said as an aside. It was an encouraging sermon and held many points. But the comment that stood out for me, as if it had been announced by a fanfare of trumpets was this :

“God is faithful and keeps every promise He makes.”

Once again my heart warmed and I praised God for His faithfulness. Intellectually, I accepted the words as the truth. And I thought all was well.

But God knows me better than that. I am not an intellectual believer. I believe God with my heart, and He knew that I needed a heart experience to be able to put aside my concerns (yes, even now I had some). And so He gave me one.

It was a beautiful morning, and when I returned home, I went into the garden, eager to see the Chinese Maple which was crowned in all its autumn glory, framed by a sky of

deep, deep blue. The glorious leaves carpeted the ground,

and the softest breath of wind made more flutter from the tree. I spent a couple of moments enjoying the sight, the sounds, the oranges, reds and browns of the falling leaves.

But then a flash of colour that was not autumnal drew my attention away from the leaves. A whisper of sound and a sudden movement made me look at a specific branch of the tree.


And there, in all his beauty of blue and red, sat a brown-hooded kingfisher.

I have spoken before of my new appreciation of colour since my

cataracts ops. I have written too how God speaks to me through birds.

And here it was, for me. The confirmation that I had not heard wrong; that I was not making up God’s promise; that it was not wishful thinking.

For me, this was God saying, “Trust Me, for I am trustworthy. I will not fail you. I have promised and I will not change My mind.”

And my heart soared and I worshipped my living God, surrounded by falling leaves, as I watched that kingfisher for several minutes.

My God is faithful. I can trust Him.

And even better – He loves me enough to send me a kingfisher – of all things – to assure me of this.

How does He speak to you?

Photo by Vincent van Zalinge on Unsplash



About Mandy Hackland

My love in life is to encourage others to deepen their relationship with God. I write devotional material, stories and small group studies with that in mind. I live in South Africa and also love spending time in the bush, bird watching and walking. I have moved to the coast and am enjoying the green spaces and beautiful vistas that surround me, reminding me of God's grace every day.
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