Can I be honest? This past year has been a walk by faith journey financially. Just when I think we are getting ahead, we get set back. You may be thinking, “Well, maybe you’re bad with money,” or, “I bet she isn’t paying her tithes.”
I’m not going to tell you I’m a money-saving guru, but I have learned how to live a frugal life. Not only that, I have discovered how to take a can of black beans and make them into a masterpiece. My secret? Cumin, cayenne, and chili pepper spices. Seriously though, shredded carrot and black bean tacos have changed my life.
Ummm. 10% What?
Paying my tithes is non-negotiable, I learned a long time ago that every blessing I have is from the Lord and I refuse to rob Him of anything. I’m not saying that I haven’t been tempted to withhold my ten percent. Five months ago I held my tithes in my hand knowing that it was the EXACT amount I needed to pay my rent on time. Flesh is flesh. I contemplated paying my tithes late. Stress ate away at my already wavering faith as I focused on the fee that would ensue if I paid my rent late – yet again. I thought about a lot of things. Was it a “ye of little faith” moment? Yeah, maybe. But, I think that we all have those times when our flesh wars against our spirit.
I paid my tithes right away, not out of rigid obligation or because I was worried that my pastor would have a dream in the middle-of-the-night revealing my sin. I paid my tithes because I trust God. I paid my tithes instead of my rent because I know that God is my provider, even when I feel weak. Living for God is not always easy, but oh-so-worth-it.
Tear Stained Hope
Yes, crazy things happen. And, yes, life is not perfect. But, that does not give me the right to flail my arms up in defeat. My less-than-perfect circumstances should not permit me lose hope.
Have I left tear stained marks on my husband’s shoulder? Yes, a few times. Not only am I human, but I’m a woman. I can get emotional. One thing I am learning is … my anxious heart is not a badge of honor. Instead, it is a mirror of my faith.
Lying awake at night worrying is a clear sign that I have not given my cares to God.
Casting All Your Care
1 Peter 5:6-8 states, “Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you. Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.”
Out of humility, we are to cast our cares upon God. Fear and worry pillages faith and encourages our minds to perpetuate anxiousness. Our adversary will try to kill us with the cares of this world and would love our stress to destroy us. Pray this with me, “In Jesus Name, take this (whatever it is), it’s Yours. I am casting this at Your feet and I will trust You.”
This prayer is simple, but it isn’t easy.
A Few Testimonies
Several months ago we needed an additional $1000 to pay our rent and my husband quoted Psalm 50:10, “For every beast of the forest is mine, and the cattle on a thousand hills,” and prayed, “God, I need a dollar from every hill.” That week, someone gave him a check for $1000.
Last month, I looked in my pantry and there wasn’t even a can of black beans to redeem supper time and I quoted Psalm 37:25, “I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread,” and prayed “Lord, you know our need and I trust you.” That night I asked my husband, “Do you want an egg or a box of brownies for dinner?” (He opted for the brownies lol). An hour later I received a text from a friend that said, “I’m on my way to your house, we have groceries for you.” There were so many goodies inside those bags, even the old-faithful black beans made their appearance. Bless God.
Be Still, Anxious Heart
Maybe you are facing a situation that is beyond your control, but continue to pray, “In Jesus Name, take this (whatever it is), it’s Yours. I am casting this at Your feet and I will trust You.” Do this until you feel peace that passes your understanding. Psalm 46:10 declares, “Be still and know that I am God.” So, today, be still, anxious heart.
God is faithful, even when you feel faithless.
I may not know who you are, dear reader, but I prayed for you this morning. You may be going through a dark valley, but don’t walk through it alone, allow God to be with you. And, whatever you do, don’t lose hope.