Saturday, December 09, 2006

God's Way

I have felt the Lord drawing me to go to Ipswich to work on my house for quite a few months. One obstacle was the lack of money. Another obstacle was a lack of skills and equipment.

This hesitancy had been going on long enough, so I prayed that the Lord would make Scott Donald call me again to offer to work on my house - and I resolved that I would agree to go to Ipswich on whatever day he nominated. I also declared that God would bring me into favour with people; that people would go out of their way to help me; and that all the equipment I need would be provided.

A few days later Scott rang. Someone had given him the acro-props I needed to do the job! And his plumbing work had become quiet, so he suggested Wednesday to do the work.

(I had previously worked for him for 24 hours. We agreed he would pay me in kind, by working on my house. He said that in return for my 24 hours labour, he owed me seven hours. He was paying me $20 per hour, which means he is charging me $70 per hour. I decided to accept his right to assert that hourly rate, and left it with the Lord to give me favour, so that people will go out of their way to help me).

Tuesday night came, but I still didn't have enough money to drive to Ipswich one-way, or even to buy a one-way train ticket. But there was no way I was going to break my Wednesday appointment now. It seemed impossible, however, to find any money by 6:45 the following morning, the time I would need to leave home to make my 8am appointment in Ipswich - and I was determined not to borrow any money.

During the day, I phoned John Sugar to tell him I wanted to give him a gift of a painting, as my way of saying thank you for all his kindness to me over the years. I also put aside another painting for him to look at, one I felt might be suitable for his clinic. That night John ended-up buying threeof my paintings for $400.

When I arrived in Ipswich, Scott provided a vehicle for me, full of petrol and tools - one vehicle for him and one for me.

We arrived at my house, and Scott had a list written-out of everything that needed to be done.

He collected a laundry-tub from a nearby job, and installed it for free.

Scott also provided a near-new bathroom vanity, which he knew was for me.

He also worked a couple of hours over and above the seven hours he owed me.

He even offered to cut the trees down for me at some future time.

And then another token of God's great love occurred. A sudden storm blew over. The rain was short-lasting but extremely heavy. We saw the flow of water from the street down my driveway towards the house. It showed us the source of the problems I'd been experiencing with the house. It also gave Scott the opportunity to get up on the roof and clear the gutters out.

The next day I was able to respond by digging a channel to direct the flow of the water away from the house. Later I also phoned the Council to discuss a solution to the water-flow problem from the street.

While Scott was on the ladder that day, an incredibly strong gust of wind arose. This showed me that the trees in the front yard are currently safe.

I didn't know where to stay that night, but I trusted the Lord. Then Scott told me I could stay at his mother's. God had it all taken care of.

On the way home after the second day's work I had to catch the Moggill Ferry because the traffic appeared to be blocked on Ipswich Road at Riverview. It was wonderful to see the large houses and properties that exist at Moggill, Bellbowrie and Chapel Hill. The Lord knew I would enjoy it.

Later that week I received my rent payment from the tenant; I also received a gift of $350 from a friend; then I received a contribution of US$200 in the mail. This was on top of the $400 I'd earned by selling those paintings. Then I remembered that when I was at church the previous Sunday, I was inspired to ask the Lord for an income of $1000 the following week - and it happened.

It is amazing that the night before my appointment in Ipswich, I had no cash at all. But by committing myself to act in faith, God gave me the favour I needed and multiplied my resources.

It made me realize that God doesn't want us to think of ways to labour towards financially achieving our goals. He wants us to only do the labour that He is drawing us to do - that, and no more (or no less). If we just do His will (do the work He is asking us to do) - if we seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness (whatever that entails, for us) - then all these things will be added unto us. The blessing of the Lord is something that is added to us - it isn't something we can purchase out of the income produced through our own labour alone. An inheritance isn't earned, it is given. Yet we do have work to do. And the work is to believe.

So instead of devising independent ways of reaching our goals, let us seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness; let's do the work He is asking of us (whatever that is, at the time) - and this may require a step of faith - then we will receive our goals, as a gift, not as something independently achieved.

That appears to be God's way.

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