I have been dealing with some stuff lately with YoungLife and in our family in which God has totally proven his role as a provider. We were given our camp forms and camp costs and they are EQUAL to our costs last year. Mind you, last year we drove a bus across the country 36 hours and we will only being going about 14 hours to New York this summer. Needless to say, hard sell for kids and parents who aren't swimming in money. So, I have been trying not to focus on the provision, but rather, the Provider.
In Malachi 3:10-12, God asks the people to bring their whole tithe into the storehouse. He urges them to test Him, to see if He will not "throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing" that they "will not have room enough for it." I just pray that I will take Him at his word. That I will test His generosity by generously giving to others. When I shift my prayer focus to my needs, the provision, I become anxious about trying to solve everything myself. In The Tender Wrods of God by Ann Spangler, she says this:
"Instead of thinking about all the things I couldn't do, I had to think about all the things He could do. Instead of thinking about my guilt, I had to think about His forgiveness. Instead of thinking of 1001 ways to solve my problems, I had to think about the countless ways that God has already helped me in the past. And I had to keep reading the Scriptures, ones that spoke of God's intention to bless and provide.
God has already proven to me COUNTLESS times that He will provide, no matter what. How in the world can I horde my blessings, that could be bestowed on others, when I know that my Provider will never forget me. She goes on to say:
"I am expecting Him to take care of me even when I stumble, even when I don't fully understand or want to face the nature of my needs [...]. I realize that God's promised provision is conditional upon my obedience. "
I have got to be obedient. I feel like I am really hearing the Lord loud and clear, so much more so than I ever have. I think he is asking of me something BIG and something specific that makes me nervous, but that He has assured me will allow Him to be a much bigger Provider in my life, something I need to experience and understand. WOW.
God, give me the faith to follow regardless of what you ask. You have already performed wonders for me for which I praise you. In this I seek full faith, not halting obedience.