We are each designed for a unique and divine purpose. Live yours!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Is God Faithful?

That's a rather provacative question, I realize! It's one that many are probably asking in light of the current economic situation in our country and around the world. Perhaps you're not saying it out loud to anyone, but certainly you must wonder . . . Or perhaps you are in good financial shape and will be able to weather the next couple of years pretty handily, but you have health issues, or a loved one is dying, or your child is involved in risky behaviors--or you are.

Whatever is going on in the world -- or in your little part of it, this question looms large at some point for each of us. I know that God is, indeed faithful! Throughout the last two years, my husband and I have learned to live on about 1/2 of our previous salary. It has been a struggle at times, because while we were comfortable at our former income level, we didn't live at all extravagantly or one penny beyond our means. So, to now have half of what was not exhorbitant . . .

And yet each month, especially in the months we thought we might need to put an expense on a credit card or figure out some other way to pay an unexpected bill or expenditure, the money came, just in time. Really!! I'm not kidding! Some months it meant that I received free lance writing work with an "ASAP" deadline that was over and above the work I had planned to be paid for. Sometimes it meant we received a refund for a bill we had double-paid months ago without realizing it.

One month, my husband's car was due for inspection. He asked me before he left, what should I do if the bill is $500 or so? You guessed it: his car passed inspection without the need for the expensive repair he had anticipated. Our health insurance does not cover many common medications. One medication I take is expensive and is one that is not covered. My doctor asked me about the prescription on a recent visit and I mentioned that it cost a lot, but that I felt it was effective. She gave me a 10-week supply of samples from her office.

So it sounds as if I say God is faithful because He has made financial provision for us over the past two years. But how would I respond to that question had our home been foreclosed on or had one of us become too ill to work? I like to think I would still feel the same way. I would hope that I would see the blessings I received in every situation. Like Paul, I would hope to rejoice in want and in plenty, in good health and in illness.

Some may believe that all of my examples are merely coincidences. Some may not believe that God acts so personally and precisely in our lives. I happen to disagree! I don't believe He's been providing for us financially because we are so faithful! I believe He is so faithful so that we learn to rely upon Him! I don't know about you, but that reliance does not come naturally to me. I am by nature a fairly industrious, self-sufficient individual. I'm not used to relying upon others for what I need or want.

Those are good qualities, but not when they are exclusive of dependence upon God! I believe that God is so faithful, so often, because I need to constantly be reminded of the source of everything in my life--everything! Christ died on the Cross to afford me eternal life! There is no other provision I can imagine needing or wanting.

Our challenge is to remember the Cross and to rejoice that no matter what happens to us in this life, God has already made provision for us in heaven.

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just, and will forgive our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. [1 John 1:9 RSV]

Therefore he had to be made like his brethren in every respect, so that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in the service of God, to make expiation for the sins of the people. [Hebrews 2:17 RSV]

But the Lord is faithful; he will strengthen you and guard you from evil. [2 Thessalonians 3:3]

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