I learned early in life that a family could live on a lot less than what a lot of people might think. My dad worked hard for the first 13 years of my life at various factory jobs, which didn’t pay that well, and my mom stayed home and took care of us children.
My dad and some men from church built our one-bedroom house that sufficed until my third sibling was born. My two sisters and I all 3 slept on one double bed for several years.
When my little brother was to be born, two new bedrooms and a two-car garage got added on by Dad and the men from church (not because we had two cars). I was about 8, and I remember being tasked with the job of lining up a bunch of nails so they were all facing the same direction so Dad could grab them quickly and get the job done faster.
When I was 14, he started his own upholstery business in that 2-car garage, and Mom did most of the sewing for couches and chairs. We still didn’t have excessive money, but we always had enough.
When I went to the overseas mission field for a few years, the Lord provided. When I single parented, it got super tight, but the Lord provided. My two older daughters remember an occasion where we washed laundry by hand outside when money ran out. But God provided the water, soap, tubs, strength, and everything needed to get that laundry clean!
Things got much better financially for about 13 years when I remarried. Then my husband’s job had to let him go because they lost a big contract. There followed some unemployment and a new, low-paying job just as the unemployment ran out. A few months later the Lord provided something much better. And after a couple more short contract jobs, the Lord gave him a good job that would last a little longer.
Most societies around the world require money to pay for things. Some people think that money itself is evil. But the Bible doesn’t say that. It says:
“The love of money is a root of all sorts of evil.” 1 Timothy 6:10 NASB
I have learned over the years to say with the Apostle Paul (on the topic of financial abundance or need):
“I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am.” Philippians 4:11b NASB
Did you know that the verse:
“I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.” Philippians 4:13
is talking about the “the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need.” Philippians 4:12 ???
I do enjoy the privilege of being able to hop in my car and drive to the grocery store and not to have to use a calculator to add up every single thing like I’ve had to do in the past.
But when my husband found out that he was going to be laid off, I was blessed to have already experienced enough years of the Lord’s provision not to be worried. I knew He would provide.
I believe that millions of people have forgotten that it is God who provides for our needs. It is not we ourselves, it is not our employers, it is not our jobs or careers, is not the government.
God can use all of those to provide for us, but ultimately provision comes from Him.
We would have nothing if HE did not provide it.
Consider these verses:
“In the wilderness He fed you manna which your father’s did not know, that He might humble you and that He might test you, to do good for you in the end.
Otherwise, you may say in your heart, ‘My power and the strength of my hand made me this wealth.’
But you shall remember the LORD your God, for it is He who is giving you power to make wealth, that He may confirm His covenant which He swore to your fathers, as it is this day.” Deuteronomy 8:16-18 NASB (emphasis mine)
Today I am thankful for money.
I’m thankful that the Lord has always kept His promise to provide for all the needs of myself and my family.
I’m thankful that He gave me a hard-working dad and mom and for giving them the strength and skills they needed.
I’m thankful for the brothers in Christ who helped Dad build our house.
I’m thankful for the lessons in contentment He has been teaching me through the years.
I’m thankful for my husband’s jobs that he’s had and the one that he has now.
And I’m thankful that God has given him the strength and the knowledge needed to do those jobs.
What about you? Do you know/remember that everything we have comes from God? Have you sometimes let the culture around you influence you to think that our provision comes from somewhere or someone else besides God? Are you worried about how you are going to pay your bills? Have you asked God for help? Have you ever read the above verses in Deuteronomy? What is your takeaway from them?