God is the great caregiver of each of us. Psalm 23 is a word picture of David’s view of God in his life: “The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.” Can you see God as the shepherd working in your life? Do you see His hand of provision?
President Woodrow Wilson was President of the United States when World War I was being fought. He was the son of a Unitarian minister. He told the story that his elderly father one day was in his carriage, being pulled by a beautiful horse. As he rode down the street, a member of his congregation spotted him and shouted, “Pastor, that horse looks a might bit better than you do.” The elder Wilson replied, “True indeed – I take care of my horse, my congregation takes care of me.”
If we have God’s blessings in our life, perhaps we should look and act like it. If we complain about things that don’t go our way, what kind of message are we sending God about our faith in Him. I will choose to rejoice today in whatever comes my way.
Tags: Horse, provision, Woodrow Wilson
The San Francisco earthquake of 1906 was one of the worst natural disasters in American history. The quake and the fire it started destroyed $400 million worth of property. And this was the day before widespread insurance.
Alex’s glass factory was in the middle of the fiery destruction. Sympathetic friends knew that Alex gave a tenth of his earnings to the Lord. They couldn’t understand why God would let such a thing happen to him. The heat was so intense that no one could get near the site for more than a week, yet Alex insisted that God would not let him down. He knew that God had promised in Malachi 3:10 to bless those who tithe.
Finally, Alex could go into the burned area. He found that his glass-works was the only building in the whole area that had not been destroyed. No damage had been done inside, not one jar had been cracked by either the fire or the earthquake. And Alexander Kerr continued to prosper. In fact, the Kerr Glass Manufacturing Corporation went on to become the world’s largest maker of glass jars.
Does this true story encourage you? What is God saying to you through it?
Tags: fire, money, protection, provision
I receive a lot of prayer requests but don’t often hear about prayer answers. I received an email today from a lady who is new to our church. She was asking for advice on dealing with several problems in her life. What I wanted to share with you today was a miracle of provision she wrote about:
“This summer God gave us a tremendous blessing, we had filed bankruptcy and it was not due to mis-spending, it was due to medical bills two years ago I spent a month at Cameron. Anyway, we decided to give up our house for several reasons. In July we were standing on the front porch of the rental where we were living. [My husband] pulled out the mail and it was a letter from the mortgage company giving us the house back free and clear. We were to take it back and they were no longer pursuing any settlement. They were done with the property.”
Wow! Have you ever heard of a financial institution doing that? That is provision that only God could organize. What provision from God have you recently seen?
Tags: miracle, provision
Several years ago I met Col. James Ammerman, a retired US Army Chaplain, who led the move to get the military to recognize independent full gospel chaplains (the fastest growing Christian group in America) along with mainline chaplains.
He authored a book entitled ‘After the Storm’ that was a history of military chaplains in Operation Desert Storm when the military invaded Iraq. A couple of notes I made when reading the book were:
- Three times as many Vietnam veterans have committed suicide than died in that war.
- There were at that time 123 Full Gospel Chaplains, 58 serving in Desert Storm.
- 25% of Desert Storm soldiers made first time decisions for Christ.
- Before Desert Storm began, terrible south winds blew. It was hot, dirty, and soldiers were miserable in their tents. However, the winds uncovered land mines the enemy had planted. The winds made it impossible for Iraq to use gas they may have had, which strengthened the confidence of Allied soldiers.
I was encouraged that what appeared to be a natural problem (sandstorm) was actually a natural assistance. Let’s keep our eyes open for problems that could be a solution. God’s ways are not our ways.
Tags: Desert Storm, provision, wind
David Roper tells this interesting story:
“Some years ago I placed a squirrel feeder on a fir tree a few yards from our home. It’s a simple device – two boards and a nail on which to impale a corncob. Each morning a squirrel comes to enjoy that day’s meal. She’s a pretty thing – black with a round, gray tummy.
“I sit on our back porch in the morning and watch her eat. She plucks each kernal from the cob, holds it in her paws, turns it around and eats the heart out of the kernel. At the end of the day no kernals remain, only a neat little pile of leftovers under the tree.
“Despite my care for her, the creature is afraid of me. When I approach, she runs away, taking refuge in her tree and chattering at me when I get too close. She doesn’t know that I provide for her.
“Some people are like that with God. They run from Him in fear. They don’t know that He loves them and richly provides them with everything for their enjoyment” (Psalm 65:11).
Tags: blindness, fear, food, provision
The day the manna ceased for Israel, the Bible records, “That very day, they ate…the produce of the land: unleavened bread and roasted grain” (Joshua 5:11). How do you get bread and grain? You produce them! God was saying: “I can provide through men or deliver it from heaven, but now I’m planning to bless the work of your hands.”
Some of us fall apart when the manna ceases. “Lord, what’s wrong? Nobody’s helping me anymore!” Nothing’s wrong. It’s time to grow up and start believing God to bless you so that you can become a blessing to others, instead of constantly asking Him to bless others so they can take care of you! It’s time to discover your gifts and start making a difference. You don’t need God or anybody else to do for you what you can do for yourself.
It doesn’t require a lot of talent in the wilderness, just faith for your next meal. Instead of us going to the world for advice, they should be coming to us for it! Jesus said, “You are the light of the world” (Matthew 5:14). That means you should be the brightest student, employee, parent or leader around.
God will wean you from dependence on any hand but His. He’ll allow the Pharaoh who fed you last year to abuse you this year. Then He’ll bring you into the wilderness and teach you to trust in Him alone. Note:
1) At first, you may not recognize your provision. The word manna means “What is it?” (Exodus 16:15). They’d never seen anything like it. It required faith to receive it. Don’t be afraid of something because it doesn’t come prepackaged the way you like it. Instead say, “Lord, if it’s according to Your Word I’m going to receive it, thank You for it, enjoy it and start living off it.”
2) It had to be gathered first thing each morning. Why? Because by noon the sun had melted it. Before you do anything else, go get your manna. Feed yourself on God’s Word before the enemy gets a chance to hit you. Once you’ve done that, you can handle whatever the day brings.
3) You receive according to your need, not your neighbor’s. God won’t bless you so that you can keep up with the guy in the next tent; if your neighbor has more kids to feed, he gets more manna. Stop measuring your blessing by what somebody else has. Your blessing is predicated on 2 things: a) The amount needed to fulfill your God-given assignment. b) The degree to which God can trust you with it. So quit comparing and complaining about what God gave your neighbor; and start being grateful for the “What is it?” that He’s placed at the door of your tent.
Tags: comparing, envy, manna, provision