Believing God’s promises has tested my faith multiple times in the past 30 years. Here’s one example:
In 1996, my husband and I sensed the time had come for him to leave his civil engineering job and pursue fulltime Christian camping ministry. This wasn’t an impulsive move. The desire to be involved in this type of ministry had been on our hearts for nine years, and we’d prayed for God’s guidance nearly every day during that time. When the camp director at Camp Homewood (Quadra Island, BC) offered him a one-year internship as program director, we knew it was time to go.
We felt like Abraham and Sarah pulling up tent pegs and moving into the unknown. We listed our four-year-old lakefront house on the real estate market and began to sort and pack our belongings. It seemed like a dream come true, but one factor made our situation a wee bit stressful: We would receive no financial compensation for the internship. That meant our family of five would live an entire year with no income.
Some friends said they envied our adventuresome spirit. Others thought we were nuts. “Aren’t you scared?” they asked.
“Yes,” we said. “But if God is telling us to go, then we dare not stay.” And so we continued to proceed with our plans, albeit with knocking knees. They sounded like woodpeckers on Pinocchio when our house still hadn’t sold two days before our moving van was scheduled to arrive. In fact, it hadn’t even rented. Leaving it empty meant being unable to pay our mortgage. What were we to do?
We prayed, reminding God that He’d promised to provide everything necessary for us to do His will. We told Him that we believed He had directed us thus far. We also believed that He was who He claimed to be – Jehovah Jireh, our provider. Based on that conviction, we continued with our plans.
Within hours, our realtor brought three young military officers to view the house. Later that day, she informed us that they’d rent if we left a washer and dryer for their use. My in-laws rushed to an appliance store and found an on-sale set in the scratch-and-dent section.
Our problems were over, it seemed, until our homeowner’s insurance company told us they were canceling our contract because we, as landlords, would be living out of state. And so my husband scrambled to find another insurance company. He met success. At 5:30 P.M., as the office receptionist locked the doors and prepared to leave for the weekend, we signed papers with a different agency. Nothin’ like the pressure cooker to spawn growth in one’s prayer life!
True to His promises, God provided what we needed on that occasion. Experiencing His faithfulness to us bolstered my faith in Him. And that came in very handy a few months later when we faced another stressful time….(to be continued on Wednesday).