God’s Blessing and Provision, Part 1: There’s More Where That Came From
With today’s violence and random attacks, the rising price of food, gas and supplies, civil unrest, political upheaval and natural disasters of Biblical proportions, it seems the Bible’s prophecies are now daily headlines.
Fear of the possibilities, or even fear born from first-hand experience, can creep in and begin to change our mindset and our focus. It’s easy to start making a plan for our security: saving more money, storing up food and supplies, buying additional insurance, making plans for various disaster scenarios, and the list goes on — all good considerations and wise counsel.
But there’s a danger even in our planning: pursuing our own plan for security can take us away from God’s. The very things we amass to keep us secure can begin to replace the true source of not only our security, but the source of all those things we’re gathering. When we take our eye off the Source, the result is more fear of the unknown and more worry about protecting it all. Before we know it, the provisions become our security instead of the One who provided them.
The key is balancing stewardship of our resources while remaining completely dependent on God for our security and provision.
At one point I realized my fear of the future was guiding my attitude and actions toward finances, career decisions, even some of my relationships. I began saving, stashing, planning and most of all worrying. As I watched natural disasters mounting around the world, I realized I could never be prepared for all of them.
I sought the Lord for peace of mind and direction. His response sent me on a 40-day attitude adjustment. In an instant, I was immediately aware of the six things I cling to for security, things I will go out of my way to protect, things that have the power to pull me off course:
- My husband – providing me love and partnership
- My boss – providing me a job
- My employer – providing me an income
- My parents – providing me guidance and approval
- My pastors – providing spiritual guidance
- My bank account/investments – providing the means to sustain my family
An admirable list of commitments, but when viewed as sources of security (even unconsciously), they became sources of fear – I was fearful of losing them. That fear is what gave them power, power to replace God as my Source and miss His provision, blessing, direction and preparation for what’s ahead. Fear is the opposite of faith. In short, these could easily become idols for me – things I put my faith in instead of, or in addition to, God.
As the truth of this list of idols became apparent, God shined the light on His path for me:
“I alone will be your provider and protector. If you listen, obey and follow me, all these things will take care of themselves. If you will look to me and trust me alone, I will prepare you for everything ahead.”
Watching one disruption after another with these six things and God’s reassurance in mind, some insights emerged: Could any of these actually save me? Which of these did God not give me? What can these things provide for me that God cannot? These rhetorical questions were very freeing.
The irony is, God has given me these six things. These are the ways He loves me, provides for me, guides me, blesses me and prepares me for my future. He wasn’t asking me to get rid of them or do without them. He was asking me to steward what He’s blessed me with, remembering that He’s the Source – the only Source. The provisions cannot become more important than the Provider. When I’m plugged into the Source, there’s no limit to the resources. There’s plenty more where those came from!
Many of the Psalms paint a perfect picture of this dependency on God. David, while king of Israel, had a powerful army, weapons, riches and wisdom, yet He threw Himself on God’s salvation. Over and over we see him seeking God for protection, salvation and deliverance. That’s because he understood this relationship between stewardship and dependency. He knew who His Source was despite His earthly riches, and he knew those resources could not save Him without his complete dependency on God.
Now, after that 40-day exploration, my new perspective is:
- Do what’s reasonable to prepare, but acknowledge that my resources are just earthly tokens of God’s abundant provision, and the slightest disasters can render them useless.
- Live in the present, enjoying what God has provided, not with ignorance, refusing to let tomorrow’s fear rob you of today’s joy. (Matt. 6:31-34)
- My number one survival tactic in any situation is my relationship with God. That’s the one thing I can obsess about, not out of fear, but out of love and desire to do His will.
- I am confident that God can do anything He wants when I call on Him instead of relying on myself. I cannot imagine the supernatural ways He can provide for and protect me. I don’t need to fear the physical situation just because I can’t see a way through it. (Matt. 19:26)
- As disasters and turbulence become more prevalent, it’s a sign of Yeshua’s return. Don’t focus on the problems; “Look up, for your redemption is near.” (Luke 21:28)
- God knows what I need. He gave me all I have. Don’t make them idols. There’s more where they came from.
“Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, ‘He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.’ Surely he will save you from the fowler’s snare and from the deadly pestilence. He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart….” Read more of Psalms 91.
In the next blog, we’ll look at a specific example of God’s miraculous provision that foreshadows what’s ahead for us as we progress into the Last Days.