Monday, December 24, 2007

God will provide

Not long ago, during one of the discussions about frugal living we had here, I was asked to clarify what I mean by saying that "God will provide". I see it as a good and fair question, and will begin by saying what I did not mean.

Did I mean to say that we should fall back and do nothing, and God will provide the means for living an extravagant, indulgent, have-it-all lifestyle? No. Did I mean that we should rely on welfare and charity? Again, no.

How do I think God will provide then, in response to our sincere prayers?

I believe He will act on our hearts to minimize our desire for material things, and to help us gain more clarity and realize those things won't make us happy, thus enabling us to live without them contentedly.

He will give us insight and wisdom, to critically examine our lives and see what things can be weeded out, even though we previously thought there's absolutely no way we can live without them.

He will provide us with creativity, to seek for alternative means of getting by just fine without excessive shopping and luxuries we have come to see matter-of-factly; when we truly need something, He will give us the resourcefulness to make it, swap for it, save for it, buy it second-hand, look for the best deal, or just do without for a while.

In these ways, and in countless other ways, God has provided for me and for many other people I know. I never worked much, and always had a small income, yet I came through college with savings, because God provided for me – not by giving me more money, but by helping me to get my spending habits under control, and to think twice before buying anything, as opposed to waving a credit card like a battle flag, and working days and nights to pay debts I have accumulated buying things I don't really need.

It would be lovely to hear how God has provided for you.

9 comments:

Chelsea said...

God didn't provide for my family in that way, especially, but when we decided to move, we came up to Calgary to look for a house over spring break. Calgary's housing rates have doubled in the last two years, so a house that was 200,000 in Houston, TX was well over a million in Calgary. We searched and searched all day, and all we saw were rediculously priced houses that were too small for us. On our way back to my grandparent's house, where we were staying, a man was hammering in a "for rent" sign. We went in and got the house! It's perfect because it's about a 2 minute walk from my grandparent's house, so I can go over there and quilt with my grandma. Everything in the move has been a blessing like this.

Laura said...

A lot of people don't think you can live off being a CNA (nurse's aide). God has blessed my by being able to do so, but it has not been easy by any means. I need to work overtime in order to pay the bills, sometimes 6 or 7 days a week. It is ok for now, I know some people are worse off. Like people that don't have a job at all or people making less with more bills. There are so many ways God has blessed me and allowed me to live off little money, I don't have time go into all of them! But a good family is one of the most imporant ones I think of.


I do have a personal question that is off topic for you. Since you are from Israel, were you ever in the military? I think I remember that Isreal has conscription for men and women.

Lily said...

Oh, shoot! I typed in a comment and it went away! I wondered if you were really 22 years old as you have learned already what it took me nearly 40 years to learn. God has certainly blessed you with clear sight and I pray he continues to bless you abundantly through out your life, blessings of what is truly important in life.

~Lily

Gothelittle Rose said...

God hasn't stopped providing for us, really. While we were preparing for our wedding, a house came up for sale just down the road from my parents' house, a house that combined every feature I wanted most in a house with every feature my husband wanted most in a house. We went for it, even though it was on the expensive side and we didn't even have the chance to Start saving a down payment. We got an FHA and just went for it.

We prayed for God's guidance, asking Him to make our path clear if He willed us to have this house and make sure we don't miss a payment if we are still meant to have it. He has kept His words, seven and a half years now.

Even when we've been out of work, even when salaries have been tight, He has always provided in any way imaginable. Sometimes through unexpected tax breaks, sometimes through bonuses at the job, sometimes through temporary part-time job opportunities, sometimes through 'secondary means' like our cars NOT developing major mechanical problems or a well-blessed local farm selling their unusually huge harvest for 'dirt' cheap, He has always given us the means by which to reach our ends. It's taken some frugality and some hard work on our parts, but sometimes people just don't realize how quickly all the hard work and frugality in the world just won't make any difference! I give God the glory.

What I mentioned as 'secondary means' is of more importance than a family blessed like ours often realizes. Much of our ability to stay afloat has to do with what terrible catastrophes have failed to strike us. There have been times when all it would have taken to swamp us was my car breaking down. It proceeded to fail to do so.

This year, with my husband working full-time and me picking up the extras (car repairs, Christmas presents, etc.) on my part-time teacher's paycheck, I feel extremely blessed!

This really is a big part of my life, because I have inherited chemical anxiety syndromes. I think that God must be setting us up to teach me patiently over and over again that He's never going to let me fall by gently testing my nerves until I trust Him fully and walk without fear. I'm getting better...

Anna S said...

Laura,

You're quite right, and I'm going to do a post about women in the military, as time allows.
Religious women don't have to go to the army, though. So, no, I haven't been in the military.

Rebekah S. said...

Amen! What a truly wonderful post! That's so true-God has promised to always provide for His children. And we must rest in that knowledge and trust Him.

Whenever I think of this topic, I'm always reminded of the story of George Mueller, a wonderful Christian man who opened an orphanage. He often found himself about to run out of food to provide for the many children in his care. But, never did he ask for outside help. He never begged for resources. He simply trusted in his Lord and Savior, knowing that He alone would provide. Take one instance for example(and this occured every time he nearly ran out of food for the children in his care)- it was late one night and Mr. Mueller knew that he had no food to give to the children for breakfast the next morning. He spent all night praying to God, asking him to provide for them. He just trusted in his Lord, knowing that He had promised to provide. Sure enough, He did just that! :) The next morning Mr. Mueller woke up to find a truckload of food and other supplies on the front porch of the orphanage; it had been donated by some volunteer.

Stories like that just amaze me! The Lord truly does provide for His children! We only have to trust in Him and live the way He desires for us to. And all of our true needs will be met! Praise God for His goodness to us!! I have so many testimonies of how He has provided for me and my family in the past. At times, He even works in mysterious ways! :) He is far better to us than we deserve.

Blessings,
Rebekah

LisaM said...

As always, you share such well thought out words, and well written. There are so many blessings - physical, emotional, spiritual - it would be foolish to try to name many of them, many I probably do not even realize right now. But blessings from the Lord they are. Thank you. Happy Always!

USAincognito said...

This year has truly been a trying year for me, for many reasons which I will not go into detail. But thru it all, God has provided. And thru some unexpected ways!

Bethany Sue, CFO said...

Bless you Anna! Keep up the great blogging girl!