I'm gonna be even more personal today. I don't want to sound like what I am going through right now is something that I am alone in and that no one can relate to. Because I know this is a very wide-spread issue with many right now. I've heard it first hand from many. It is the issue of God's provision thru our finances. It's been a doozy for me lately and my sweet and long-suffering husband has been having to take the brunt of it from me which I hope he knows that I am so very sorry about. That is something I never want to add to his shoulders. But we are persevering and knowing that God has a purpose in all of this, even if right now we aren't feeling a lot of relief from this financial strife.
All that to say, I have been continuing my reading each day and have had to pause and stay with a few passages over the weekend that put me a day behind, which I'm just taking as God keeping me at His pace with me and not me trying to stick with a rigid schedule. No rules! Just relationship! I'm doing this simply to hear from God, listen to His instruction, and develop my relationship with Him. And I encourage those who are reading along with me to go at the pace God wants you to go. That is where you know it is a heart-driven journey with Him.
In Proverbs 1:32, it says "...whoever listens to Me will dwell secure and will be at ease; without dread of disaster."
I had a rough day Sunday fearing our finances again, knowing we had more bills than money in the bank. I didn't even know if we'd be able to buy groceries this week. It's a bit of a tense subject for Tim and I right now. But after talking it through on Sunday, we just decided to stop trying to figure it all out since it was bringing more strife, and to still our hearts, pray, and ask God to direct us through this. Questions I always am asking are, do I need to go back to work? Do we need to do more in cutting down on bills where we can, even if it's a little? What next, Lord? It's just hard to know what the right answers are in those moments when fear and doubt set in and have you confused. And I pretty much every morning wake up with this very think on my mind and the enemy tries to throw me off before my day even starts by bringing worrysome thoughts to me. But I'm learning how to combat it thank goodness. And I honestly don't have clear answers at this moment even about what our next step is, but I have to trust that God knows the end from the beginning and that since He is not worried, that I shouldn't be worried either. The Lord is still here, and very much speaking to me about waiting on Him and trusting Him, and I believe if anything that He is saying, "Stop trying to fix it all. I've got it under control."
Here are some verses that stuck out to me the last few days that confirm this is what He is saying:
Psalm 4:8 - In peace I will both lie down and sleep; for You, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.
Psalm 5:3 - In the morning You hear my voice, O Lord; in the morning I prepare a prayer for You and watch and wait for You to speak.
I love that our pastor preached on Luke 5 Sunday, which happens to be in my Bible reading today. Jesus shows up to who will be his first disciples soon after, and teaches them on their boat, He then asks them go out into the deep to catch their fish. They had been fishing all night and had caught nothing but had stayed in the more shallow end. So they did what He said and went out deeper, and soon after their nets were breaking from the overflow of fish that they were catching. It was then that they were humbled and felt very underserving to the point of repentance. But Jesus said that soon they wll be fishers of men. How many of us feel underserving of what God does for us, only for Him to turn around and use us to bless someone else. What amazes me in this story is, that after Jesus told them what he told them, they laid down everything they just caught and followed Him. Would we do that if he asked us to?
I'll be honest. I've been asking God what the "deep" means for Tim and I over trusting Him in our finances. What is it that we can do to show we trust Him to provide for us, even if it means discomfort to do so? The groveling certainly isn't doing us any good. I believe that our faithfessness is definitely one of the main things that is keeping God from showing Himself in the way He wants to. But at the same time, I also believe that even in our toughest circumstances that He allows, that is when He will accomplish His bigger purpose, and that is having more of us for Himself, than us giving ourselves to the things of this world (money, material things, etc). The disciples gave up everything they knew as "normal" to follow Him. And I see that happening in my own home and it hurts, but I think it will serve a much higher, eternal purpose than paying my next bill. Do we even want God to be our all in all? Tough questions but we will all have to answer Him one day. Are we in or are we not?