WATCH FOR GOD
"We won't have to buy you a back-pack this year. Last years is still in good shape." I said to my daughter when we were talking about getting school supplies.
"But I want a new one. I get a new one every year." She answered.
"Most people don't get a new one every year and yours is still really nice."
A few nights later we were coming home from the club when my daughter asked if we could go to Target.
"What do you want at Target?"
"I found some gift cards that Wanda gave me and I want to buy something."
It was kind of late, I would have had to shower and change before we went so, I said we could go in the morning. However, we didn't make it to the store until the following evening.
Sarrah went to the customer service desk when we arrived at the store to see what amount of money was left on the gift cards. It wasn't quite the amount she had been hoping it would be.
"It's not to bad. What is it you want to buy?" I asked.
"A back pack."
"But you already have one."
"I know but I have some picked out. I don't think I have enough money, but you'll help me right?" She asked.
I nodded. Of course I would help her. And it blessed me to know that she knew I'd help her. She went and looked at the back-packs she had picked out and finally chose the one she wanted. I helped her with the amount she was short and we left with prize in hand.
"Trust in the Lord with all of your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all of your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your path straight." Proverbs 3:
Right now, we are making life changes, and have to do a lot of waiting. At times it is hard and frustrating to finish a step toward our goal only to have to wait until we can do the next step.
What peace would fill all of our days if we trusted God with everything as easily as my daughter trusted me to help her cover the cost of the backpack.
That trust comes from a day to day relationship of interaction between the two of us.
That trust can be built with God in a daily relationship of interacting.
This summer at VBX (Vacation Bible Camp) at our church, the volunteers and kids wore bracelets that had the words, "Watch For God."
Sometimes God shows up when I am not watching for Him, and it surprises me.
Really? God is always there, never leaves, no matter what I am doing, so I don't know why I get surprised.
One of my favorite things I love to hear about is how God works behind the scenes while prayers are being lifted up about a certain issue. It can sometimes feel like absolutely nothing is happening or will happen to make a prayer finally be answered and then boom, stories of how God is working behind the scenes come to life.
Recently we had a big overwhelming issue to deal with. We asked our friends to pray. We had no idea what to do. A friend walked up and God had given him the solution for us. We stood absolutely amazed that God had spoke into his ear in regard to our hearts cry.
Also, we had a big fiasco with vehicles over the last year. And at the same time a very good friend of mine, (a Sister Blue Thread) was without a vehicle. We finally came to a point where we needed to sell a vehicle. I prayed it would sell quickly, but I also wished I could just give the vehicle to my friend, but we needed the money to get our original car back from the mechanics.
Then I received a text from her asking if we were selling our car and for how much? I told her. I then talked to my husband about it. He prayed.
The next day while I was getting the car ready to take pictures to put on Craig's list, my husband, came outside to tell me, the amount of money he would take for the car, from my friend. It was quite a cut for us, but he prayed and that was the amount he came up with.
He text her and asked how much money she had in order to buy a car. She text back the exact amount my husband had told me prior to his text to her.
We sent a picture of the vehicle to her. She bought the car.
The story doesn't stop here.
The car was really dirty when we got it. I shampooed that car a few times, I scrubbed it, and washed it. We also had the mechanic fix a few things on it.
So while she was praying for a car. A vehicle was being worked on for her.
And it was exactly the car she had wanted. Even the color!
God does hear our prayers. He is in the prayer answering business. Sometimes when those prayers don't seem to be answered...He is doing work in others lives to make those prayers answered.
This is the God who speaks and the world was created. He can answer the prayers by just saying a word. And sometimes. He does.
Other times He allows us to be a part of the excitement of answering another persons prayers. We get to be a part of the team.
I learned a long time ago to say yes, when someone feels like they are to do something for me. Why? I learned that to say no, is to stop the work that God is doing in another persons life by allowing them to be a part of the answered prayer.
And it feels so good to be a part of someone's answered prayer. And it feels so good to be the recipient of answered prayers. And bask in how much God cares.
In the book of Esther, which is in the Old Testament, and a short, very interesting read. Better than all of the fiction stories. The Jewish people's lives were threatened. Queen Esther was Jewish. Although, the king did not know this right away. Her Uncle prompted her to do something to help the people of the land. She asked everyone to pray and fast for her. She then put her life on the line and went unheeded to the King.
If the King didn't call you before him and you went before him, he either pointed the scepter toward you to say yes, or basically...off with their heads, that even pertained to the Queen.
She put her life at risk to help her people. God had already put her in the position to be able to go to the King. Still she had to find favor with him or it was her life at stake.
The King accepted her. Then Esther was able to let the King know about what was happening. Through the course of the story, the Jewish people were protected, and given power to fight their enemies. The king's army helped the Jewish people and there was great victory.
Throughout the entire story you can see how God used people behind the scenes to answer the prayers of His people.
The hardest part about waiting for a prayer to be answered is when it takes YEARS or when the answer is NO.
NO is an awful answer to hear.
And waiting for YEARS for a prayer to be answered is horrible during the WAITING.
When I was a new believer, I had an opportunity to pray for someone who had a brain tumor. The surgery did not have good odds at all. Basically, the percentages had him coming out of surgery a vegetable, or not making it at all. Still, he went in to surgery.
An amazing thing happened. When the surgeons went in to remove the brain tumor. It was GONE!!!!
No brain tumor at all.
He had all the test beforehand. It had been there and then it was gone.
Wow! Did I want to pray for people after that? You bet I did.
I had faith to pray, so I prayed and prayed whenever I could. Then a few friends of mine got sick. One made it through the horrors of cancer. The other, after three rounds, died. It was horrible.
Within the next few years, I prayed for her husband, he died. My friend's dad, he died. A little boy, he died. I can't remember all of the people I prayed for.
Were there other answered prayers. Yes. But I didn't understand why these people had to die.
I prayed for the company my husband worked for and he got laid off. I prayed for my neighbors who couldn't find a job. They lost their home and went and lived in a trailer. Then my husband's friend died. My husband couldn't find a stable job. My friends dad died.
Suddenly, I didn't pray as confidently as I did before. My prayers changed.
And changed. And changed. And that was actually...really - good.
I studied the Word and got to know about the person I was praying too.
In the New Testament when they prayed for Peters release from prison, angels came in during the night, and walked him out of the prison.
Yet, James was killed by a sword, Stephen was stoned by the mob, and a lot of Christians were arrested and killed.
I wondered about this. Why were prayers answered so differently? Sometimes, God says...that awful word, NO. BUT not because He is mean or doesn't love us. Not at all.
His Word says, that all things turn out for good for those who love God and are called according to His purpose.
ALL things. Even the NO will turn out for good.
Even though I don't see that now. It's a matter of believing. A matter of faith. Is His Word true?
He loves us beyond a love we will ever comprehend. Do I believe it?
Is He Lord? Is He All Knowing? Sees All? Is He the King?
His no, is always covered with goodness and even in the pain, He is there. Sometimes, in life we will experience pain. We all have times to live, times to die, times to prosper, times to not prosper, times to love, times to hate. That's how it is down here. The Bible even says that in Ecclesiastes.
Sometimes, God takes care of the matter by walking with us through all of the pain and misery. Those are the times we see Him work. We feel His touch. We get to know Him as we hold onto Him. And then we have a new confidence in HIM and who HE is when we face battles.
And then there comes a day when we look back at the road that was so painful, and instead of dust and gravel, we see a beautiful garden that has been fertilized by our tears and God's love. And we are more able to help others that go through the same things.
My prayers today. Yes, I give Him all of my needs and wants. And I pray for goodness for others, but I've also learned to...WATCH FOR GOD. He may have a different plan than I do and I'm learning to trust His plan is the best plan.