Except for the three hours of sleep that I got, I spent most of last night in tears. I should probably add that they were tears of gratitude. I would have called myself a drama queen in regards to the incident if I didn’t know the nature of God and the mysterious ways he sometimes works. Ever since I came back from my Christmas trip to Bloomington, I have eagerly awaited my summer trip. This year however, due to having almost no income, it became less and less of a possibility as the months went by. In addition, my brother, aka my normal pet sitter, would be tied up as would the rest of the family this weekend because of my relatives from Taiwan being in town. So at the beginning of this week, I had to reluctantly say no to Bloomington this summer.
Then suddenly last night, by God’s incredible provision, I had $100 freed up to use for things I needed. I began listing in my head all the bills I needed to pay including, utilities, car payment, insurance, gas, laundry, internet, phone, the list went on and my head was starting to swim. I was trying to figure out which one I should knock out first when out of the blue I thought about my trip which would now be made possible if I used some of the money. As much as I wanted to do it, I was really hesitant because the trip in my mind wasn’t a “necessity.” I didn’t need to help out my college pastor’s church with their children’s program. Besides, I told myself that I was given the money so I can pay bills, not so I can go on a trip. My stomach started to churn and knot and I was ready to cancel the trip for good when I heard the unmistakable voice of God.
“I want you to go, and I’ve provided a way. It’s a gift.” Stunned, I tried to argue, “but what about my utilities and gas and all the other stuff I have to pay?” “Do you not think I can provide for those as well?” came the response. Continuing, he surprised me by saying, “Is life more than utilities?” I smiled at the new rendering of Matthew 6:25 and Luke 12:23. Suddenly, I burst into tears as the love of God swept over me. I kept hearing the words, “It’s a gift” and I finally understood. Love gives, and keeps on giving.
Here’s the interesting thing though. I never prayed about this Bloomington trip. I never asked God to make a way for me to go. Why? Because I never ask God for such frivolous things. The things I pray for are like jobs and my family’s salvation. I never bother God with what I consider are “wants.” But then I thought about the gifts my friends give me on birthdays or Christmases. Many of those would be considered “wants” as well. My friends know I don’t need another teacup or Archivers gift card, but they know I like them and enjoy seeing me smile…because they love me. God doesn’t always give me everything I want, for that would not be loving just as spoiling a child wouldn’t be an act of love. However, much more than any earthly father or friend, God is the giver of good gifts. Why? Because he is love, and he loves us so much more than we will ever know. I get it. I really get it.