Thursday, May 02, 2013

Jehovah Jirah - God Provides

I can say the words, but when it comes to believing them fully, with all my heart, I realize that saying and believing can be different. Drastically. "God will provide." It's simple. It's easy to say. Yet, it is utterly overwhelming.

In two days I will be walking across a stage, shaking Dr. Halvorson's hand, and receiving my diploma from Covenant College. Four years of my life will climax on that day. Except I don't know the rest of the story. I'll be honest, in my dreams of going to college I imagined that I'd graduate knowing exactly who I'd be marrying and where I would work and live. The truth is, I know none of those things. I am as single as single can be, I have applied to several jobs, but have had no leads, and I don't know if I'll have an income this summer, thus I don't have a house and don't know where I'll be living when June rolls around.

Older, wiser people who have a family, a job, and a home, have told me not to worry, that God will provide. And I know God will provide, but it sounded like such a cliché phrase. They could say that because God had provided for them, but I was feeling helpless. I'd gotten more rejection letters than acceptance letters. Discouragement was looming and praying seemed hopeless.

And then I had my last day of student teaching. I walked around the classroom on that last day, helping my kids as usual. They were working on reading journals when one girl called me over. The question for them to answer for their reading was, "What spiritual emphasis is in the passage you read?" I asked her what the passage was and she proceeded to tell me about Morris (a blind man) who trusted his eye-seeing dog to walk him across the busiest street in New York. The dog did it and Morris walked safely across the street without even a scratch. The student asked me what spiritual emphasis I saw in the passage. Faith. Faith is something hoped for, something not seen. Faith is putting your trust in someone, trusting them because they have promised to never leave you nor forsake you. Morris had faith in his eye-seeing dog, just as we should have faith in God. Though we may be blind to the future, God sees it clearly and will lead us through it, strengthening our faith all the while. I was convicted. And I prayed for renewed faith. And God, being ever faithful, has been answering.

Being that this is the last week of college life, many friends are wanting to get together one last time over a meal. I don't have a job, thus no income (except for food funds thanks to loving parents!). I decided I'd be frugal with my money and not spend it on meals. I was fine with it and decided I would go and order water. Last night I went out with a group and just ordered water. The waitress came and had an extra apple juice. She apologized and said we could keep it. I thought it was pretty neat and was thankful for it. This morning, I went to breakfast with the elementary majors for one last hurrah. I ordered a cheap coffee and sat down with them to enjoy it. They were eating muffins and bagels and I'll admit, they looked so good. The waitress brought by a bagel and set it down on the table. Someone finally asked me why I wasn't eating the bagel in front of me. I told them that I hadn't ordered it and we found out that nobody had and it was an accident. But they let us have it for free, so I got breakfast too.

The way God works is astounding. I had prayed for more faith, but my faith in God's provision was wavering. And then God showed me that He provides for something as small as an apple juice or a bagel so that I can join in on the meals with my friends. If this God can provide for something I didn't even ask for, how much more will He provide for my future? For a job, a house, maybe even a family?

Today I was overwhelmed by God's grace and provision. It is only because of Him that I even made it through four years of college. And I know that He who has been faithful will continue to be faithful. I may not know the future, but I do know that in two days when I cross the stage to get my diploma, that I can fully trust that God will provide! He knows what I need and He will bring it to pass. And I pray that I can believe that and that my faith in Him will continue to grow as I walk into the unknown with an all-knowing God. 

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