My life is currently a life of want and need. Sometimes it is easy to think that God has forgotten me or to question what else He might allow me to suffer. That’s when fears set in.
It is usually just as I get to the point of feeling desperate and panicked that He gently whispers that He still loves me and has not forgotten my needs.
My washer is going out. You have to really monkey with the knob to get the agitator to start working and you have to listen for the rinse cycle to begin because it may get stuck again. It smells like burnt wires. I can’t afford a new washer nor can I afford to get this one fixed, and I live about nine miles from the nearest laundromat. Living on a dirt plot with four children and cleaning houses for a living, I need a functioning washer.
My 16 year old occasionally does yard work for a neighbor. The neighbor recently received a “new” washer and dryer from a friend who bought a brand new set. The neighbor offered us his old washer. Not the dryer, just the washer. It is older, but he did have it completely gone through a few years ago. We graciously accepted it.
Today, while I was at a birthday party with the younger two children, my oldest daughter dropped off my deceased mother’s washer. It was fairly new when Mom died last year. My daughter received my mother’s entire estate, but she and her husband have a nice, new front loader set so didn’t need my mom’s washer.
I needed a washer; I got two. My cup runneth over.
The birthday party we went to…….the little girl wanted a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle Pony party, so there were Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle everythings and pony rides. I know I’ve mentioned before that my youngest daughter is obsessed with horses. Her birthday is next week. I stressed over even being able to get her a gift. She isn’t getting a party and certainly would never get pony rides. However, today, for an entire hour, she rode ponies. It didn’t matter if it was for her friend’s birthday or hers. She was on the back of something dusty, hairy, and smelly, and to her, that was like spending an hour in Heaven.
One of my clients recently passed away. I’ll still clean for his wife, but his daughter was another of my clients and she sold her house to live on her mother’s property. I lost a job. A source of income just dried up, and I’m already not making it.
The charter school is paying for swim lessons at the Y, and my son was thrilled to see a friend from daycare there. The class is small, only about six kids, and it is offered on other days and times also, so it was really something to end up in the same class with a boy he’d been in daycare with for a mere three months. The daycare had only had about ten kids in it. The boy’s mother recognized me though and struck up a conversation. Turns out, she needs a housekeeper so desperately that she is willing to take the three hours that just opened up due to the loss of my other client.
That client has become one of my very best friends; I just love being with her. And, my sons absolutely adore her husband. When they moved to her mom’s I inherited jewelry, frilly bath goodies, a scented candle for the living room, a very nice camera, two blenders (the motor on mine smokes and smells; I needed one), and a new ironing board and door hanger for it. My cat even got in on the action and got a scratching post and a bubble waterer.
They’d already given me a stereo when no one but the Lord knew that I secretly longed for praise music in my house. She thought the CD part of the stereo didn’t work and was hopeful my teenage son could get it working. However, it turned out there was just a fourth praise music CD stuck in the three CD changer, jamming the system. Once removed all four CDs took turns filling the air of my home with praise and joy.
Yesterday this client and her husband brought over a table they made years ago when they were first married and were struggling. It means the world to us that their hands made it lovingly for their first home together. We will treasure it always. My husband was awarded our furniture in the divorce, but it’s being replaced with things of much greater value and meaning.
Another of my friends, a dear woman who has graciously supported me in every imaginable way throughout this ordeal, gave me her beautiful dining set last weekend. I clean for her, too, and had admired it. I would carefully dust and wipe and run my hands over it. It is a lovely, sweet butter color.
One morning about four months ago I prayed and asked the Lord for something to put my cookbooks on. I wanted some sort of a shelf for them. I was thinking that perhaps I might find something at a yard sale. Within minutes my oldest daughter called and said that she could help me get into my dad’s storage shed. My brother had filed legal papers, taking everything my dad owned and all that he had, but was going to allow me until that Saturday to go through the storage shed.
In the very back, covered in mouse droppings, was a hideous bright blue little book case. I immediately imagined it clean with fresh paint and holding my cookbooks. The only old paint I had that would work was the paint I used for my youngest daughter’s doll table several years ago. It was thick, but I got just enough to paint the little bookshelf. It is a lovely, sweet butter color. And, it now sits next to my lovely, sweet butter color table.
There have been many, many blessings just like these over the months since my husband left me, my parents both died, and my brother turned on me. When I write these things out like this I feel guilty for ever questioning God’s presence or His goodness. And, I clearly see that my life is not a life of want or need. It’s a life of grace and gifting, a life of provision and abundance.
My cup runneth over.