To my faithful readers, you know that I have been waiting 46 days now for my tax refund. To date, it has not come. What you may not know is why I am praying fervently that it comes soon. The reason is that I have a debt that is coming due at the end of the week, and I have to pay it or else I will receive a very large financial penalty (thousands of dollars of more debt). As I sit here, our checking account has a balance of $58.79. This is enough for me to fill up my car, and maybe buy a few groceries to get us through until our next paycheck in nine days. We might have to live on tuna for a few days, but we won’t starve. And the worse thing that can happen with the debt is that I have to pay more later.
I am trusting God with this problem. I trust that He is going to do the absolute best thing for me and my family. My trust is absolute. If He decides that this is a good time for someone to empty out my bank account so that I can’t afford gas, then I accept that. If He decides that I need to pay thousands more to this creditor than our current arrangement requires, then I accept that. If He decides that He is going to provide the money that we need, then I accept that as well. Do you understand? I’m asking God to provide the money we need, but at the same time I am telling God that I that I recognize that He knows more than I do, He knows what is best for me, and I trust Him with the circumstances of my life.
In praying about this issue, I have been reminded of something the past few days. I wrote a post four years ago called Perspective. The post still applies today.
Last night I learned that a godly man named Matt Herbster is experiencing suffering that dwarfs my own. His wife Julie died of cancer yesterday. Matt and his five young children are facing sorrow of which I can only imagine. They are steadfast in their belief that Julie knew Christ as her Savior, and therefore they will see her again someday, but they still have to deal with the (probable) years of separation before that happens.
Today I learned of another tragedy. Eleven years ago my wife and I were members of a church in Iowa. We were friends of the song leader and his wife. We taught their children in AWANA. I listened to their son Jared say his Bible verses. Today I found out that Jared grew up, got married and had a son named Perrin. Last October Perrin, a 14 month-old boy, died unexpectedly. Having experienced a miscarriage, my wife and I can understand a small fraction of the pain that Jared and his wife are going through, but even so, it seems like the sorrow would be magnified when you have met and gotten to know your child before they die. I have never experienced the death of one of my children who live with me. I pray I never do.
And so, I look at my problem of “no money” and I am thankful to God, because my problem, in comparison to what some other people are going through, does not seem so big. I am reminded to pray for others, and not just myself, because someone else is always going through a problem worse than mine. I thank God for His many blessings, and continue to trust Him for all things.
Postscript: This is a website that the Stanley family has set up to receive donations to build a park dedicated to Perrin. Please donate if you can. Thank you.