If it is one thing which God has been trying to show me over the past few months, as He’s guided me through the series, “Wealth Stored for the Righteous,” it is for me to both realize-and be thankful for-the things which He has already provided for me, the things He has already given me, the things I already have now. As if Salvation and His Spirit dwelling inside of me weren’t enough, I have been blessed beyond measure in so many other ways.
I have seen God’s hand involved in so many circumstances in my life over the past months, and seen direct results from so many prayers, and so many things which I have done … acting strictly on faith, my own personal belief, that He would bless us. It is so easy to say something like “I really, really, really believed that God would come through for us, and He did.” But, that’s a true statement, and I can’t put it any other better way. And, as things go along, progress, as God continues to be faithful to His Word and His promises, it helps to build my faith even more.
I am writing this to encourage you, and all of us: Just look at things in your life which have happened over the past few months. Just think about how blessed you and I have been, in so many ways. I know … I know … there have been tough times, times of trial and struggle … times we’ve had to work long … work hard … then work more … then work harder … But, God has given us the strength, and sometimes just plain courage, to keep on. To keep on working, and to keep on believing. I always say that the best students get the toughest tests. I just told that to a student in High School today.
I’ve written so often, and will continue to do so about this: Thank God every day for what you have … or, to be more specific, what He has allowed you to have. How blessed we are. Every day. To start your day with prayer and Bible study.
Every day, I thank God for electricity, running water, running hot water, shelter and protection through the home he has provided for us. For our vehicles, to keep them running safely. Yes, I’ve had auto repairs. I prayed that God would give us favor. He did. We re-built our home over the Summer/Early Fall months, which took great leaps of faith, every step of the way. We asked for favor in many, many areas, involving a lot of different people … and, God tied it all together, and gave us favor in every single step.
After the re-build, we had a lot of painting and other work to do … which required warm weather, as paint, mortar, etc., has to have some degree of warmth to cure or dry properly. God gave us favor … every step of the way. We had the warmest December on record (for example), and November was especially kind to us. Last year, for example, we had between 1-2 feet of snow on the ground over the Thanksgiving break … this year, we had none. I had mortar and concrete work to do … I caulked windows on Thanksgiving Day, had concrete work to do the first week of December. The warmest weather ever. I just finished the last “outside” detail the week between Christmas and New Year’s. Was wearing short sleeves in the house, and our pellet stove over the past few weeks has been kept as low as I could get it, without turning it off. I see God’s hand in everything. As long as I keep doing that … He’ll keep putting His hands in.
These are just some of many real-life examples of how God has blessed us. There are so many more. I also pray, every day, that God would give both Carol and I favor on our jobs. He has. I pray every day that God will continue to bless us financially. Whether we like the concept or not, “financial” is a big part of life. We just have to remember that money doesn’t have a lot to do with “being successful.” Remember that Joseph, for example, was a “prosperous man” while he was still a slave. Because “God was with Joseph.” That’s the reason Joseph was a successful man, and that’s the only way we can be truly successful, truly prosperous. Only if “God is with us.”
And … as I’ve written so many times … if God is with us, just like in the case with Joseph, if God is with us … those around us-even at work-will know it. And, the same is also true if you don’t have God with you: Those around us-even those we work with-will know it.
I say all this to encourage us all to just be thankful for what we already have. Remember that it is a Biblical principle that God will give us a little … to see what we’ll do … and how we act-and react-will determine the future course.
I pray that God will allow me to see others the way He sees them. That way, my compassion for others will grow. This will lead to opportunities to “show Him” to others.
I pray that God will allow me to see myself the way He sees me. That way, I’ll be able to “see what I’m doing,” and ask for His help in specific areas I need to improve in.
I pray that God will help me be the man He called me to be, in order to do the things He’s called me to do.
I’ve always said that there are things I need to do more of, and there are things I need to do less of.
I should add one thing to that: There are things I need to do none of.
I’ve discovered the lasting, “every-day in every-way” benefits of prayer and Bible study every morning. I’m also beginning to realize the same benefits if I close my day with prayer, to re-cap the day … and ask for help for the next. This, literally, works miracles.
“The Lord hath done great things for us; whereof we are glad” (Psalm 126:3). Let’s thank Him more … so that He will do more … which really means, between-the-lines-I’ll do more.
I’ve also decided that I should be more grateful to those around me who bless me. Whether it’s at School, or on the job, or where ever it may be, it seems that we spend most of our time and concern over those few who cause us trouble. So many meetings, rules, etc., are done and made to counter-act, or due to, the very few who don’t follow the rules, or cause “all the trouble.” I, jokingly say, in the course of a day, “Welcome to America … where everyone must pay for the actions of a few.” I need to let those people who do follow the rules, who do make our jobs easier, that we appreciate them. That we are grateful to them, and for them. That I do notice them, that I do know who they are, and that I am so much thankful for the way they conduct themselves, etc. We just never know how much we would bless someone else just by doing this one thing.
We are all so blessed.
In closing, allow me to repeat a couple of the closing lines from “Wealth Stored for the Righteous”-Part 14:
“What incredible treasure we have! What incredible wealth we have! What incredible riches we have! The best part? It is for now … and for eternity!
And, yes, I’ll say it: The more of this treasure you give to others … the more you receive!!!”
I pray that we, and we all, thank God every day for what He has already provided for us, what He has already given us, and to be thankful for what we already have.
I’ll continue the thought next time.
Blessings to you, and your Family,
Richard. Vincent. Rose.