Sunday, February 5, 2012

GOD will provide!

Isaiah 46:4 (NIV)
"Even to your old age and gray hairs I am he, I am he who will sustain you. I have made you and I will carry you; I will sustain you and I will rescue you."

Some people find it hard to speak about GOD and money in the same sentence. Some people find it easier to accept that GOD would heal a person of an illness rather than a financial problem. When we have a financial need we often hesitate to ask GOD because of a general misunderstanding about how our Heavenly FATHER cares for us. I have many testimonies on how GOD has come to my rescue in various situations. However I want to share a testimony where GOD proved to me HE is my provider!

I had a situation were I was several months behind on my apartment rent and had been issued an eviction notice by the landlord. After going to court to address the issue, I received a 10 day notice in which I had to pay the back rent I owed plus court costs. If I did not pay the money by the 10th day, the court would have the local police come to physically put me out of my home.

I called, emailed, and sent text messages to friends and family asking to borrow the money, but no one could help. I owed several thousand dollars in back rent, and most everyone I knew did not have that kind of money available. Although many people wanted to help, they just could not do so. I also had several pending business deals, all of which fell apart, leaving me with no chance to earn the money on my own.

Well, the 10th day came and I still did not have the money. I asked the landlord if I could have extra time to pay. Since the 10th came at the end of the week, the landlord gave me the weekend and extended the deadline to that following Monday.

On the evening of the 10th day, I spoke with a friend who share his testimony with me about a similar situation. My friend told me that he and his wife owed several thousand dollars on a "hard money loan" (which meant it absolutely had to be paid in full by a specific date). The date was fast approaching and they did not have the full amount to satisfy the debt. My friend and his wife prayed together about the situation and later decided to sow all of the money they had in church (in other words, they gave all of their money in the church offering). A few days after that church service (and 1 day before the loan was due) a person gave them the full amount needed to pay off the loan.

I thought about what my friend told me. I know it sounds crazy to give away the money you have when you need more money to resolve a problem. We have heard it said, "it is better to give than to receive". Here is what JESUS said about giving . . .

Luke 6:38 (NIV)
"Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you."

Here is what the Apostle Paul said about giving . . .

2 Corinthians 9:6-8 (NIV)
"Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work."

I thought about what JESUS and Paul said. I thought about my friend's testimony. Then I prayed to GOD, asking HIM to help me and lead me in the way I should go. That Sunday before the Monday due date, I went to church having only a few hundred dollars. This was ALL of the money I had total. Although I was scared, I decided I was going to trust GOD. So as an act of faith, I gave ALL the money I had to the church in their Sunday offering. So now I was broke with no money at all, but I felt confident that GOD would somehow save my home.

I remained confident until later Sunday evening. I became very nervous and even felt foolish. I began to have doubts about what I had done. I knew GOD could absolutely rescue me if HE wanted to because HE has done so in various situations throughout my life. However I began to wonder if HE would do it this time. As the night went on I became more anxious and had trouble sleeping. All kinds of thoughts were going around in my mind. Not one person I knew could help me and I had given away all my money. I had no other choice but to rely 100% on GOD. If the LORD did not resolve this problem, I would most certainly lose my home. As I thought about this I became more afraid as I prayed & cried for several hours into the night. Eventually I did fall asleep.

On Monday morning when I woke up, I discovered close to one thousand dollars in my bank account. As the day went on I received an additional few hundred dollars in my account. Where did this money come from? I knew it came from GOD and I immediately gave HIM thanks and praise. Behind the scenes GOD had been working on my behalf with a few business deals which I thought were not going to happen. Although I had more money than what I started with on Sunday, it was not enough because I was still short several thousand dollars. Then later that same afternoon, I received an email from one of my business clients. I had contacted this client 1 week earlier to see if they were interested in doing more business, but I did not receive a reply unto now. This client told me they wanted to make a deal with me and offered to pay me the exact amount I needed to pay my back rent. In other words, with this one deal alone, I could pay the landlord in full and still have money left over from the previous deals. Although this client and I came to an agreement that afternoon, I did not have the money before the close of the business day. I was unable to speak with my landlord before their office closed for the day. So now I had missed the deadline and I became extremely nervous (unsure what would happen next).

The next morning (Tuesday) I went to speak with my landlord as soon as his office opened. I told him I had part of the money now and expected to have the rest very soon. He said he could not accept it and needed the full amount. I asked if he could give me a few hours to come up with the rest of the money. He told me I could have the rest of the day, but also warned me the court had been notified I had missed the deadline. This meant the court would have the police come to physically put me out the following day (Wednesday). Before leaving his office, my landlord gave me a copy of the court order stating I would be forced to leave in 24 hours. Within a few minutes of leaving his office, the money I was expecting from my client had arrived into my bank account. I began praising GOD and thanking HIM for HIS grace and mercy towards me. I soon returned to my landlord's office, paid the full amount of what I owed, and gave him back the court's final eviction notice. As I left his office I thanked the LORD for rescuing me, saving my home, and leaving me with well over one thousand dollars to meet other obligations.

We can NEVER pay GOD for a blessing. My giving all the money I had was not about the money itself. It was a demonstration of my faith in GOD and HIS promises to meet my needs.

Philippians 4:19 (NIV)
"And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus."

I will be the first to point out that my faith was shaken and at times throughout this ordeal I had very little faith. JESUS told us that we only need a little faith and mountains would move.

Matthew 17:15-20 (NIV)
"Lord, have mercy on my son,” he said. “He has seizures and is suffering greatly. He often falls into the fire or into the water. I brought him to your disciples, but they could not heal him.” “You unbelieving and perverse generation,” Jesus replied, “how long shall I stay with you? How long shall I put up with you? Bring the boy here to me.” Jesus rebuked the demon, and it came out of the boy, and he was healed at that moment. Then the disciples came to Jesus in private and asked, “Why couldn’t we drive it out?” He replied, “Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you."

My faith has now increased because of what the LORD has done for me. This does not mean that everything in life will go my way. For years I prayed to GOD asking HIM to save my marriage and keep our family together. I had faith and believed HE would do it. However after 20 years of marriage and 2 beautiful children, my ex-wife divorced me in 2011. I don't know why GOD moves in some situations but not in others. I do know that HE has a purpose in ALL things (good & bad) that happen in our lives that HE will use to benefit us.

Romans 8:28 (NIV)
"And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose."

The separation and ultimate divorce from my wife was extremely painful and by far the most difficult experience of my life. However the LORD brought me through it and I am still here today as a thankful person with much joy in my life.

My friends, I have shared my experiences with you in hopes that you might be encouraged in whatever you are facing today. No matter the situation or circumstance, GOD will provide for you. Trust HIM with your life! Lean on HIM with all of your cares and concerns. Pray and ask GOD to help you and lead you in all situations. Do not get yourself ahead of GOD, thinking you can resolve you situation on your own. Things only prove to get worse by doing so. Instead, be patient and wait on GOD to guide you. The LORD will provide for you in all of your needs.

Matthew 6:25-33 (NIV)
"Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life? “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith? So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?' For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well."

Hebrews 10:23 (NIV)
"Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful."

Psalm 33:4-5 (NIV)
"For the word of the LORD is right and true; he is faithful in all he does. The LORD loves righteousness and justice; the earth is full of his unfailing love."

I pray these words have been a blessing for you as they are for me (bringing us in closer relationship with our FATHER). Please feel welcome to reply and share your thoughts by posting them here or privately at tpbiblestudy@comcast.net.

If this message has touched your heart and you do not know JESUS CHRIST as your Lord & Savior but want HIM in your life you can accept HIM right now wherever you are. Pray this prayer out loud, "Dear GOD, I ask forgiveness for all of my sins. I believe that JESUS CHRIST is your son. I believe that JESUS suffered and died on the cross, was buried, and was resurrected for me. I accept JESUS as my Lord & Savior. Come now and live in my heart. I accept you as head of my life. In the name of JESUS I thank you, Amen."

If you have just prayed this prayer I say to you "GOD bless you and Congratulations"! If you do not have a church home, pray and ask GOD to lead you to a local (Bible believing) church in your area where you can be baptized in the name of JESUS, fed the Word of GOD, and fellowship with other Christians.

If you have any questions please send an email to: tpbiblestudy@comcast.net

GOD bless you!