Wednesday, February 1, 2012

LESSONS IN FAITH

WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 1, 2012


I thought I'd share a little bit of our lives.
Condensed version, slightly updated


Four years ago today, my hubby was unemployed.

He came home mid day and shared the news.
 It was shocking to say the least and hard to wrap our brains around.
My hubby is and has always been an extremely hard and dedicated worker.
He is as committed and driven as they come.
As unfortunate as it was, we committed to seeing it through with God's help.



I knew hubby was trusting God because our scheduled date was still on
(gift card to PF Chang's).
We only shared with our children and Pastor.
(they were too small to understand, my son was in preschool and my baby girl was almost 2)

(weeks after with our babies.....
Dad & N in the back yard and Dad with M at the doctor's)

11.25.11  N.B. almost 6 & M.L. 8 1/2

NOT out of shame or pride, but to rely on the God we claimed to know and trust.
We're so private anyway, it would have gone against the grain of who we are
 and clearly indicate to ourselves that we were scared.
I mean we WERE concerned, who wouldn't be?
We didn't have extra cash laying around,
just a small savings which eventually ran out.
We knew this was our make-it or break-it moment.

IF we say we trust the Lord, it meant trusting Him
 through blessing and  hardship.
THIS was our hardship.
We have family members who would have wanted to rescue us.....
We wanted and desperately needed God to do it.
So we dealt privately.

We eventually shared with family and a few others months later
 and asked them NOT to worry, to pray.
Truthfully, sometimes people's well intentions or concerns
 begin to speak doubt or negativity and we didn't want any of that.

We had all the concerns: insurance for our kids, food, clothing, mortgages, bills, gas...
But decided worry wasn't going to have a place in our home, to destroy us or our marriage. Worry gets you no where. And lose sleep for what?

 Philippians 4:6, “Do not be anxious [do not worry] about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.”

So we did just that, we prayed and sought God. That we would learn, change and grow. 
We prayed in specifics: The kind of job, schedule, salary, benefits etc, 
that it would clearly be God's doing not ours.
And we fasted. (THAT was the key)
This book was a wonderful tool

LESSONS, LIFE LESSONS, FASTING, TRUSTING GOD
found online

 We also watched every dollar we spent, got on the reduced programs for utilities and lunches for kids, healthy families insurance for the kids(avail at the time), and worked with our mortgage companies(like pulling teeth and nails).
 My awesome sis was working on a new modification program at work
and worked on our behalf to get modified loans (looong dreadful process), 
 and then we eventually  signed up for our church's food closet to sustain us,
 it was such a blessing.

All this was happening while getting inconsistent unemployment checks for hubby.
 I too was not working outside the home, I had been a stay home mom since the kiddos were born and did part time childcare for my friends. 
When they lost their jobs I did too.
It was bad all the way around and for many people.
So....we continued to trust.
We didn't dare stop tithing, giving offerings or donating to the organizations that encouraged our/other's faith.

WHY? Our pastor always says,
 "If its not enough for the need, its a seed"
An investment into the lives of others who need Jesus.
IF we hold our wallets dear to our heart, we are trusting the dollar more than God.
My hubby has said this a time or two, 
"look at your money, even IT says
'IN GOD WE TRUST' "
lol
He's right.
God calls us to help those who have needs, as He will provides for ours.

2 Corinthians 9:12  ‘ This service that you perform is not only supplying the needs of God’s people but is also overflowing in many expressions of thanks to God’ 

It teaches us NOT to be selfish, self absorbed or prideful.

2 Corinthians 8:14  ‘At the present time your plenty will supply what they need, so that in turn their plenty will supply what you need’ 


In our moments of weakness or discouragement, God would send us encouragement through His Word, songs on the radio, minister's on tv, each other, friends or a gift. 
We got to spend more time as a family than we ever had, 
enjoyed each moment and savored the experiences. 
Hubby would say, "everyday is like Friday".
He got lots of projects done at home and church, was a huge help to me around the house,
 as always, would go grocery shopping with me... willingly too lol,
 he got to drive the kids to school, go on field trips and other activities. 


8/08 Childcare + cafe shopping trip w/ hubby, my baby girl & T :)

 We were continually being provided for and reminded that God loved us
 and was taking us somewhere through this season.
That's right,
It was a season, not a sentence lol
It was a temporary situation not a lifetime conviction.
Can't remember where I heard that but it is so true. 
We look at our disasters(self induced or not),
 burdens, hardships and see no end, no answer, no change.
It does change.

Well, at the end of our 1st 21 day fast God moved!
We got blessed financially and it helped so much.
But it spoke more to our hearts than our bills,
 GOD KNEW our struggle and was blessing us for our commitment and trust in Him.

When his 1st year of unemployment came up (Feb 1, 2009), it landed on a Sunday.
My hubby had been helping with receiving the offerings 
and was doing it again that Sunday.
He felt God telling him to share what was happening,
 because at that point, much of the congregation was dealing with similar situations.
The world was dealing with it too, and not favorably.
So he did.
It was a cathartic release, 
to share the difficulty and how awesome God had been through it.
That trusting had been the only way we'd survived
and that there was hope.

Well on September 1, 2009 (EXACTLY 1yr 7months after)
My hubby was employed :)
A job he didn't find for himself, one which had found him!
And just about everything we had prayed for, even some we hadn't,
 was provided!

We've been able to encourage others through this situation
and we continually thank God for how he provided, sustained and taught us.
We are humbled by his greatness.
God has given my hubby supernatural favor,
none of which he could have produced on his own.

It pays to trust God wholeheartedly,
I encourage you to try it.
:)


FASTING, UNEMPLOYMENT, FAITH, FAMILY
6+ months employed!



---Update---
1.2.16 celebrating our newest addition's 2nd birthday!
And our kids are now 12 1/2 & almost 10.

As of today, 2.1.16 it has been 8 years!
Hubby has continued to work for the same company,
promoted a few times and blessed with increase on so many levels.
We have grown, literally,
and continue to trust the Lord.


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