Friday, November 2, 2012

What Does Faith Look Like - Purposeful Provision

This third post might not seem big enough to qualify.  I have a thousand examples, much more dramatic than this one about God's provision and I can bend your ear for hours with tales of the big miracles He has worked for us.  Yet, this is a series about faith in my everyday, so I feel called to use "smaller" examples.

(And it seems my 90% of my everyday is played out with children right now, so they give me great content to work with!)

When the Church and Scripture talk about provision, the reference is usually to "our daily bread." Those are our needs to survive (and I believe thrive).  The Lord continually provides much more than I need, financially speaking.  Sophia asked me yesterday on the way to school if we were rich.  I thought about it for a second and decided to tell her the truth.  The reality is, compared to the rest of the world, yes - we are rich.  I never take that for granted and want to do a better job of using our wealth to bless others.  We are working towards that end.

However, beyond God's financial or physical provision - He gives the kind of daily bread you can't get from anything else.  I see His provision for me most often emotionally.  That is where I require the most amount of change.  I need reigning in because I spent so long using this personality of mine in the wrong ways, I have some bad habits.  But He never fails to teach me He has got anything and everything I need under control.

This morning, the girls rode their bikes to school.  We've done this several times, but it took on new excitement when Sophia learned to ride without training wheels.  Given my expanding girth and delicate condition, I don't ride my bike or run with them - I walk behind.  They generally stay within eye and ear shot and have been taught to wait at the stop signs or cross walks until I either catch up or am close enough to give directions.

Today, though, they were going faster than I could keep up.  At one point, I lost sight of them around the corner and I had a LONG way to go before I turned.  I knew they would reach a major street crossing sooner than I would make the turn, so with each step, I became anxious.  Not because I didn't think they would be careful, but as any mother will attest, having your eyes on your children is almost as good as having your hands on them.

When I finally turned, I thought they had gone on without me.  I began to think that if only I could see them, I would feel better.  My logical mind knew they were safe, but my heart began to squeeze inside my chest, feeling too big to fit.  Tears started to prick my eyes and then I heard it:

Mommy, can we go?

In the early morning light, I couldn't see they had indeed stopped and waited, just like they were supposed to.  They were waiting for my signal, which I gave with a relief and not a small amount of emotion in my voice.

(They proceeded to ride ahead like banshees and had to come back out of the school gate to say goodbye.  Which I am grateful they did so I didn't have to chase them down the hall to kiss them...I would have done it too.)

On my walk home, God whispered in my ear:

You see, I got this.  I know what you need.  I know what they need.  It's going to be alright.  You know you can trust me, so just do it.

Allowing the Lord to provide for our every need, big or small, is the essence of trusting Him.  He resists being put in a box, one that would limit how we see what He is capable of.  He is a God too big for human convention, too powerful for us to worry that He isn't paying attention to our every need.  Just like a father, He watches in order to give His children what they need.  As Jesus said in Matthew 10:29-31:

What’s the price of a pet canary? Some loose change, right? And God cares what happens to it even more than you do. He pays even greater attention to you, down to the last detail—even numbering the hairs on your head!...You’re worth more than a million canaries. (MSG)

I am humbled that He would know my own needs, big and small, better than I do - AND is more than able to meet them.  I am so grateful for all His provision and blessing - from financial stability, to good health, to keeping us safe and to bringing us peace when we are out of sorts.  I am the most thankful for the way He thinks of me as priceless - as someone worth caring for.  

Just in case you didn't know, He feels that same way about you too.  

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