I woke up at 2:30 this morning to Sadey’s cries. After a minute or two she drifted back to sleep while I drifted more and more awake. Well, needless to say, it took me a while to fall back to sleep. So, somewhere in the milieu of thoughts in the wee morning hours, I started thinking about some of the amazing things God has done for us lately. A month or so ago, I told you in "A Testimony" about how God instructed me to pass my birthday gift cards on to other people. Well, I did follow through within a couple of weeks after writing that post. It is truly more blessed to give than to receive. The ladies I gave the gift cards to were so blessed. They both said that the timing of receiving the gift cards helped to get them out of a bind. I’m so grateful that God allowed me to be His conduit of provision for them. I love helping people, and it’s not often that I can help people financially (I declare that is changing in Jesus name! I see my family being a conduit of finances to vast numbers of people as God leads!).
Not long after I gave the ladies the gift cards, my pastor told a story of how he had received a couple of generous honorariums for a couple of his speaking engagements. When he first received them, he was rejoicing, thinking that the gifts were harvest for things he had sown in the past. However, God spoke to his heart and told him that the gifts were, in fact, seed money, so he gave it all away (still rejoicing). That’s exactly how I felt about the gift cards. At first I thought they were harvest, but God showed me they were really seeds. If a farmer eats his seed, he will have nothing to plant during the next planting season and his provision will dry up. If I had disobeyed God and kept the seed for myself, that vein of provision would have dried up. Instead I was obedient, and now I’m seeing areas of new provision open up in our lives.
One of the first things that happened, about a week after I gave away the gift cards, is I was asked to be the official, unofficial personal assistant to my Worship Pastor (that just means I am now his unpaid go-to person). I now have the opportunity to help my Worship Pastor and learn so much from him. It’s a privilege for which I am so very grateful. I am thankful and humbled that God would choose to use me in this way to help lead our congregation into worship to Him. It is an unexpected blessing which I feel is a direct result of my obedience. Passing on the gift cards was not only a financial act, but also an act of faith. God has rewarded my faith with a new opportunity.
Another way I've seen God's provision is that this month we have actually had money left over at the end of the month. This is the first time that I can remember this happening in quite a long time! I believe that God has made our money stretch farther, even in these tough economic times. The thing is, no matter what is going on in the economy, God is our source. An unstable economy doesn't cause God to scramble trying to figure out how He will provide for us. He owns the cattle on a thousand hills. He is God, and He is in control of our lives when we give Him room to work and be in charge.
Of course, I’ve already shared with you in the last couple of posts how God is providing for us to get the help Todd needs for his speech development (another thing that has taken place since I chose to obey). But, in the last couple of days something else has developed. Some of you know that last year Shawn applied for a promotion at work that he didn’t receive. There was a good amount of red tape that he had to get through in order to be awarded the promotion. He struggled and fought in his own strength in an attempt to get promoted without success. Earlier this year God showed me that He wants to provide for us in totally unexpected ways that we cannot acquire on our own. Red tape has always been a part of receiving the promotion that Shawn applied for last year. And kudos to Shawn, because he has been working hard to improve his performance at work in these past several months. However God used some current circumstances in the executive level of the ATF to move on men’s hearts to remove the red tape. After Shawn’s next evaluation (sometime this month), he will be given the promotion without a struggle! To me this is just another example that when we try to force blessing to come in our own strength we will come up short, but when we allow God to have His way in our circumstances, and we do things His way, we will succeed!
Thank You, God for Your amazing provision! Thank You that You are not unaware of our needs and You are faithful to provide! Thank You that Your provision is not only a blessing for us, but for others as well! Thank You for allowing us to be conduits for Your provision to ourselves and others! Thank You for Your unexpected blessing and for moving on our behalf! Thank You for new opportunities that allow us to be a blessing to You and those around us! Thank You that You are using us to help make Your Name known throughout the earth! Thank You! Thank You! Thank You! Amen.