You'd think I'd know better by now. I mean, I've seen God's provision up close and personal since I was in high school. I'm sure he was on the job before then, but my awareness of it kicked in around my junior year.
My parents left full time, regular employment to go into full time ministry. Not nice, neat church jobs. No, they went into full-time Rescue Mission work. Not glamorous. And definitely not well-paying.
And while we certainly went through our periods of insecurity, in reality we never lacked for food or shelter or anything else important. I even have lots of stories of God's specific provision--for big things, like houses, or little things, like the onion my mom prayed for that came in a bag of groceries delivered by some college girls from church.
It used to be easy to believe in that kind of provision. I went into full time ministry myself and followed His lead to new towns for new opportunities. Things weren't always easy, but I never felt alone or doubted that I'd be taken care of.
Philippians 4:19 could have been a theme verse for that period of my life: "And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus."
But for some reason, now that I have a family and things aren't as we expected them to be, at times I find myself more dependent on my circumstances and the things I can see rather than relying on the Great Provider and trusting in what I can't see.
There are big uncertainties looming as we reach the end of the expected resources without new jobs or alternatives lined up.
And yet, when I stop looking for the 'big picture' (because it's a pointless exercise as I absolutely can't see it at the moment) and look at what's right in front of me today, I see God's provision, the same as it's always been there for me.
It's come from unexpected places--the proverbial 'check in the mail' that we've never experienced before. The gift of several months anonymously paid at a facility the whole family uses a great deal but is the kind of thing that's often the first to go during times of belt-tightening. The gifts themselves are so appreciated, but the affirmation they express and the confirmation of God's faithfulness that they communicate are even more significant to us.
There's a passage of scripture that tells us that those who are faithful in the little things can be trusted with greater things. I know that passage is meant to remind us to be faithful with everything God entrusts to us--big or small. But it keeps coming back to me in a different way; because I can see God looking after us in small ways, I know can trust Him with the big stuff too.
How about you? Do you find it easy to trust in little things or big things? What are you trusting Him for today?