“That I may proclaim with the voice of thanksgiving,
And tell of all Your wondrous works.” (Psalm 26:7)
I believe the Bible is very clear in its instructions to us to tell of the wonderful blessings that God bestows on us. In most cases, we are not to keep the Lord’s work a secret, but we are to proclaim it and be witnesses to the world and encouragement to each other.
If you are like me, you probably find it easier to experience God’s blessing that to tell about it. I tend to be a quiet person and can be shy about speaking up unless I am strongly prompted. Using this blog I have been able to write about various personal subjects that would have been very difficult for me to verbalize. I am thankful for the opportunity to continue to write and to tell about how good God has been to me and my family.
I’ve mentioned my job change several times now, about how it has disrupted my writing schedule and taken up much more of my time than I would have anticipated. I have not been entirely fair in this and I want to correct that today. What I have not talked about is how God has used it to bless my family financially and to restore to us what we once committed completely to Him.
It all started late last summer, in August. I woke up one Saturday morning with one of the strongest, most clear messages from God that I had ever received. I’ve heard of people who had experienced the Lord in a dream or received a message in a dream and this was not quite like that. I don’t recall any images at all nor was there an audible component to it. It was more like a mental stamp that had been placed on my brain or even a branding that left such a clear imprint that I had no doubt as to Who it had come from and what I needed to do.
The Lord was prompting me to give a special offering to our building fund at church. And not only that, He had given me a very specific number that was to be given and this amount was very nearly all of our cash savings. My trepidation was not in the giving, because I knew the Lord was going to take care of us. My trepidation was in how to tell my wife who is far more of a saver than I am.
I should have trusted the Lord and talked to her about it that morning but I found that I couldn’t get the words out at breakfast time or during the clean up afterwards. By then, it was time for me to get ready to go to work and I prayed that the Lord would give me courage at my next opportunity.
That evening I still was unable to talk to Vicki and I went to bed feeling a little bit apprehensive. I knew I needed to speak and that God would work it all out. I resolved to start Sunday morning off by being completely honest and leaving the results up to the Lord.
Vicki was up earlier than I that Sunday and when I entered the kitchen she was busy with breakfast preparations. As we sat down to eat I told her I needed to talk to her about something and I proceeded to explain to her as best I could what I believed the Lord was asking us to do. I purposely did not tell her the amount and concluded by asking her to pray throughout the day for a number that would give us confirmation of what the Lord wanted us to do. She looked a little bit worried but to her credit she agreed to do it and took it on faith that God was speaking and that we should listen.
The very next morning she gave me a number that was exactly the same as the number that the Lord had revealed to me. There was a new excitement about the way she said it and I knew that the Lord was at work and we were privileged to be involved. We made some arrangements that week to go by the bank and make sure there would be no complications with writing a much larger check than normal and then set a date to give our offering the following Sunday.
Two weeks later, a man walked into the retail store where I was working and offered me a job. The starting salary was 50% better than what I was currently making and there was a chance to make commission on any sales that I happened to make. After prayer and careful consideration I accepted the job and started work on Septermber 23rd.
In discussions with the owner of the business (the same man who had offered me the job) I was told I could probably expect to increase my pay by around five dollars an hour through my commission opportunities if I worked hard. Using that information I set goals for myself, both weekly and for one year (52 weeks) in terms of total commission.
Despite a slow start in September as I was learning the job, my end of the year total for 2013 exceeded my original 52 week goal by more than 10%. In other words, I made more in 3 months than I had hoped to make in an entire year. What’s more, we are now back up to the same level of cash savings that we were when we gave the offering back in August.
God is very good. Vicki and I have no doubt that He has completely worked all of this out to His glory and to our delight and amazement. And He continues to work and to bless. Both of us want to continue to be available for His use and this experience has shown us that when we are obedient He can do great things.
Thank you, Lord, for being so good to us!