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Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Where the Cash Flow (rubber) Meets the Road - TRUST

My wife and I live on a very meager budget. I'm a youth minister and she stays at home with our daughter. We know that she could work and we would have a lot more to go around - but we feel strongly that this is the life God is calling us to and that this is the type of lifestyle we want for our children. That being said - we live with less than most people and are fine living that way. Still, even living simply there isn't much left at the end of each month. We are constantly placing our trust in God - knowing that he will provide a way where there seems to be no way.

We believe strongly that God is calling us to trust him in all things and to know that he will indeed provide for our needs. Still, there is such difficulty in doing this when the rubber meets the road.

It is easy to place our trust in God on payday or when we get a nice tax return or I get a good speaking stipend, etc. It is when things get tight that it gets difficult. It is also ironic that it is always when things get tight that something unexpected happens and we have to rely on God to help us figure out where the funds for the latest "emergency" expenditure is going to come from.

The other irony is that every time I write or speak on Trust, I am thrown another situation in which I need to trust God even more with my life, my family, my job, or my finances. Last week I wrote a five part series on trust, based on retreats I've lead on trust.

In that series I spoke about tragedy and loss and how it teaches us to rely on God, I spoke of leaning into God more with our lives, and coming to a place of faith where - like Horatio Spafford who penned the words to the hymn "It is Well" - we can truly know that all is well in ever circumstance that we face. I shared how understanding the promise we have in God is important in order to find the hope that enables us to trust. Lastly, I shared that God only has good in mind for us and that though difficult things happen, it is never His plan to hurt us - he truly only has good in mind for us at all times.

So last night when after two days of pain my wife and I came to terms with the fact that she had to get to a dentist immediately I began to worry. Of course I was up all night trying to figure out how in the world I would pay for this. How will I cover what could be an enormous expense?

This morning I still had not put my worry to rest and I was frantically trying to figure out a solution - truth be told I still don't know the solution. I do know that my wife is feeling better after getting an emergency dental procedure that she needed. I am grateful that the procedure was done and that it didn't cost as much as I thought it might.

What I do know is that in the midst of my worry and scrambling - I heard that still small voice in my ear whispering "how much time do you add to your life by worrying?" (cf Matt 6:27) In that moment I felt as if God was saying - "go take care of your wife - get her cared for and I will do the rest."

So we took her in, she is doing much better and I feel at peace knowing that she is well - I also know in my heart of hearts that it will be well and God will figure out where the funds are coming from to pay for her care. After all - look at the birds of the air - they do not toil, right? (Matt. 6)

In our learning to trust God with our lives - we must never forget that each day we need to take one step closer and closer to trusing Him with our whole being. No matter what circumstances arise in our lives - we must not lose sight of our goal of being in complete union with God. If we are to achieve this union than indeed we must first work towards complete reliance.