It was the fall of 2015. My husband & I had separated that summer, & I was doing all I could to support my three boys on the seasonal income of a server, on top of every other challenge the enemy had tried throwing my way ever since I had made the decision to give my life back to Christ. Every day was a struggle in one way or another, to say the least. But I was making my stand, refusing to give up.
During the financial struggles as I worked to build a new life centered around God, He provided help through His people & my church family, ensuring we never went without. I remember one Sunday that summer, I walked into to church with only six dollars in my pocket, no food at home for my boys, & had to work that evening. I had no idea what to do. I confided our situation to a friend, dropped my kids off at their classes, & went into service. All through praise & worship, & as I listened to the Pastor talk about giving before collecting the offering, I kept hearing the Holy Spirit nudge me “give that six dollars, give it all.” That’s crazy right?! Give all the little bit you’ve got to your name when you have no food at home? No one in their right mind would do that! But I did it. I gave it all, it’s not like there’s a whole lot to be done with six dollars when three growing boys need to be fed anyways. I gave my last, & I gave with a heart of thankfulness that I could trust God to provide. And when I left church that day, not only had my spirit been fed by the Word taught, but I left with confidence that my boys would be fed, because I left with $150 in my hands to buy food for them.
Now back to the fall, when I was really getting tired of going to the church & other sources for help. Our local Catholic Charities had also given me some assistance, & while I was blessed with a job that worked with my kids’ schedules, it wasn’t enough. A single parent just CANNOT provide for her family depending on tips alone. So I went back to Catholic Charities & asked for help finding better work. They helped me pick a job with a decent starting salary to apply for, & as soon as I had the application done, called & put in a good word for me. Then, I waited. And as I waited, I prayed. I prayed & I begged God, to give me that job.
The waiting is the tough part, isn’t it? We spend so much of our lives waiting, & if we aren’t careful- if we don’t learn the art of patiently waiting- it can produce, fear, anxiety, and/or depression. And that’s exactly what the enemy wants to do- he wants to replace your faith, with fear. If he can do that, he can pull you off the path you’re walking with God, & into a place of depression & walking in the flesh. So, how do you wait patiently?
You meditate on the Word, on His promises, & recall the things He’s already done for you. Jesus told us that whatever we ask in prayer, & believe we receive, we shall have (Matthew 21:22). In between the believing & receiving, & the “you shall have,” though, we’ve got to stand in faith. Romans 8:25 says “But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.”
I tried so hard to patiently wait. Then I got tired of asking God to give me that job, & I had a revelation moment. I stopped asking Him for it. I recalled all the ways He’d provided before,that six dollar story, how He’d been consistently showing me how His Word works & how every promise I found in it was for me also. I realized, I’d already asked Him, & if I truly believed the Word when it said He would give whatever I ask in believing prayer, then why keep asking again & again? He heard me the first time!
I stopped asking. I started thanking. I worshiped God for Who He is, I praised Him for the wonderful things He was doing in my life. And I thanked Him that the job I needed & was waiting to call, was already mine.
So often we become so consumed with the thing we need in the moment; we spend so much time in prayer, asking God & speaking scripture back to Him, that we forget to come to Him not with an attitude of worry, frustration, & anxiousness, but of thankfulness. And isn’t it funny, how as soon as that need is met, there’s a new one for us to ask God for?
One of the greatest acts of faith we can give to God, is to give praise & thanks for what we do not see yet. He has already done it. He gave us all that we need at the cross. We don’t have to beg Him to do anything. We need only to give thanks & praise to Him. When we get our praise level to match our prayer level, then true breakthrough comes!
By the way, I got the job. I’ve been an emergency dispatcher for a little over three years now, & got a second job, also in dispatch, that I’ve been at for almost two years- where I have the blessing of choosing when I work, so I can still make sure I have time with my children & for church. He did this for me, when I stopped begging, & started thanking & praising.
What is it you’re asking & believing for today? Let your praise & worship match your prayers, & watch God work! And, as always, feel free to comment or email me if you’d like to share, I’d be honored to come into agreement with you for your needs!
–Walking by Faith & Praising in the Waiting, Gerri