“you don’t have what you want because you don’t ask God for it.” – James 4:2
Question for the day: What is appropriate to ask God for?
A few years ago, Don and I experienced a magnificent expression of God’s grace. It is so good that we share it whenever we get the chance. We feel good about telling the story because it has nothing to do with us and everything to do with God’s unfailing love.
I had recently left my job to be a full-time church volunteer, so we had already taken a 50% reduction in income. Finances were tight, but we were walking in faith that we were doing what God wanted. So we didn’t worry so much.
But then the economy started it’s historic meltdown, and Don’s firm released pretty bleak projections for year-end paychecks – Absolutely no bonuses this year and mostly likely pay cuts on top. Is this ringing a bell for anyone??
I have always budgeted on a yearly basis, so I ran my numbers with this new information and we realized pretty quickly that we weren’t going to have enough to pay our bills that year. And due to my job situation, we had already cut everything we could think of.
So what else could we do? We prayed, a lot . We asked God to show us what to do. And we asked God to help us. We didn’t think we had any extra money coming in, so we had to figure out a different way to meet all these obligations. Then a miracle happened.
One morning, as was our custom, we were praying before Don left for work. We again asked Him to help us with this problem. A couple of hours later, I got the phone call. Don had been given a special bonus. Even though everyone was assured that none was available, for some reason, money was found to reward Don for his efforts that year. And it was exactly what we needed to cover our short-fall. We serve a gracious God.
Now a couple of my friends heard this story and told me they didn’t think it was right to ask God for money because it wasn’t a spiritual need. I don’t agree. I mean, we weren’t asking Him for vacation money or a new car. We had two tiny babies at home and we couldn’t pay our insurance.
I think of my children. If they had a need like that, wouldn’t I want to help them? Of course I would. And God loves us much more than we can imagine loving our own children. I think it gave Him great joy to provide for us. And we have been faithful to tell that story again and again and to proclaim His goodness.
How about some of you? Are you hesitant to ask God for those things you really need? Why is that? What is it that we believe about God that would make us think that He won’t take care of us?
This has been such a pivotal event in our faith journey, that I would like to spend a couple of days on it. There are some other factors about the event that I think were critical in this story. I will be sharing those things tomorrow. But for now, I would love to hear your experiences. We are walking this road together.
How great Thou art! You hold me in Your victorious right hand. You supply my needs from Your glorious riches. Forgive me Lord, when my faith fails. Help me to remember that You are my first provision, and not my last. Create in me a greater knowledge of your character, that I might never doubt you. Give me the confidence, as Your precious child, to ask freely for those things I need with no reservations.
Blessed are You, O Lord, for Your faithful love endures forever.
In Jesus’ name I pray,