Tuesday, November 22, 2005

God our Provider

Psalm 34:8-10
Oh, taste and see that the LORD is good;
Blessed in the man who trusts in Him!
Oh, fear the LORD, you His saints!
There is no want to those who fear Him.
The young lions lack and suffer hunger;
But those who seek the LORD shall not lack
any good thing.

God provides for us, His children. No matter where we are or how hopeless things look, He provides for us. This should bring joy to our hearts and thanksgiving to our lips. Is it not an awesome thought that the Creator of the World thinks of our needs?
Sometimes, His provision comes in strange forms. We think He should provide in one way, when He has another plan that will bring Him greater glory. My grandfather tells a story about this quite often. He was a maintenance man for a college. One day, his boss told him to go mow a strip of grass outside one of the college buildings and not to leave 'till it was done. While he was out mowing the grass, he grew hot and thirsty. As there was a little store across the street that sold sodas, my grandfather thought he would walk over and get a coke. But this caused a conflict in his mind: should he walk across that one street and get a drink or should he obey his boss and not leave the strip of grass? My grandfather talks about this conflict to a much greater depth than I am going to write about. Suffice it to say he listened to his conscience and stayed. But he was still thirsty. "Oh God," he said," I wish I could have a drink." As he said this, he looked up. There was a coke hanging in mid-air. He rubbed his eyes and thought, as any sensible person would have, that he was hallucinating. But still it hung there. Gradually, he perceived it hung from a string which came from a high window in the college building he was outside of. A man, a professor, was holding the string. He motioned for my grandfather to take the coke. So he did. Then the man pulled up the string and shut the window. I think this is a very good illustration of the unusual ways in which God may choose to provide for us.
Besides providing by unexpected means, sometimes God does not provide the things we think we need. I suppose you have all had the times when you said to God,"But Lord, this is absolutely necessary!" and it did not happen. We like to think we know everything we need. But God knows best. Perhaps He thought you needed to learn patience or trust more than you needed that thing.
Not only does God provide for our physical needs as He sees fit, He also provides for our spiritual and emotional needs. Suppose you were in prison for Christ's sake and you were treated very badly there - little food, clothing, or medical help. But God provides you with the strength to not give in and deny Christ. That is as much God's provision as the comfort we in America experience.
So let us thank God for His loving kindness to us in that He knows what is best for us and always does His holy will.

Note: My grandfather says he wasn't working at the college yet. He was working at another building, but he didn't specify what building it was. I think he would also like me to mention that God yelled at him when he started to leave the premises. Also, he was looking up to God, then he looked down and saw the coke. :-)

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