This is the verse we are memorizing this week. We have seen Him provide and we are clinging to the promise that He remembers His covenant forever.
Our God is our provider. This is our 2nd family Ebenezer. Do you remember Samuel raising the Ebenezer in 1 Samuel 5:12 saying, "Thus far the Lord has helped us."? Oh how I wish our Samuel were here to raise our family Ebenezers with the rest of us.
When we first started talking about our Ebenezers we asked the kids what are some ways the Lord has helped us so far in our life? Every single person had to mention how the Lord has provided for our family. We have seen his provision so clearly during the past 2 years at the Seminary. When we stepped out in faith moving there, basically jobless so Greg could attend classes, we knew the Lord would provide. But WOW, how he provided was amazing.
He provided food from the seminary food bank, inexpensive clothes and things for the kids at the seminary re-sell it shop, better friendships than I could have ever imagined, so many playmates for the kids, a wonderful place to live on campus (700 square feet was tight, but we had some of the best times for our family in that cozy apartment:), and He provided financially for us. Both Greg and I were able to work part time while there, me teaching my childbirth classes and doing doula work, and Greg by using his culinary:) skills in the campus kitchen. We wondered how would we balance all we had to do to make it work with out a "real job" or income during those 2 years. God used so many family member, churches and even strangers to provide for us. It was so neat to see the hands and feet of Christ in our lives through all of those people. God was so faithful to provide all we needed and so much more... abundantly.
I remember when we were first married and had Louis. We decided I would stay home with Louis and take care of some other children before and after the school day. When we figured out the finances it seemed like we would be $200 short each month from what we thought we would need. Right around that time Greg and I had gotten up in church and given a sort of testimony during the service. Just a month later we received a check from some members of church that we really barely knew. They could have had no idea what amount of money we were going to be short each month...we didn't say anything to anyone. Their check covered that $200 each month and even had a little extra in the end. They had seen our testimony in church and knew that I had stopped teaching at the school and that Greg was also working for the church. The Lord had laid us on their hearts. That was one of of the first times that God visibly laid His financial blessings in our lap. We were amazed and so grateful. And similar situations have happened over and over again in our life.
So now we come to such a different place in our lives. We know God had the power to make our situation with Samuel so different last October. Honestly that is a struggle at times. He is all powerful, He easily could have allowed that cord to be the continuous source of life for my son, and not what caused his death. I have always known that ultimately my children are Gods... on loan to us for a time. I just never anticipated having to give one of them back to him so much earlier than expected. I still pray to the Lord as I check on the kids before I go to bed each night, and place them back in His care while I sleep. I know they are always in His care, but I verbalize it every night.
When I think of how God is providing for my son now, I am jealous. How I long to be in His presence with Samuel. I am homesick for my eternal home. But until I am there with him, I know He will provide for me and my family here on earth. He has proven it over and over again.
This week He provided :
My MEND support group, a place where I feel free to share honestly about my grief and I know people completely understand.
A get away for me this coming weekend to spend time with 2 dear, lovely, longtime, Christian friends.
A call for Greg to continue serving here at our church permanently. (Now we just need to pray for the Lord to make His will and plan clear to us.)
A great lunch with the director at CPO, the Crisis Pregnancy Outreach, who we may adopt through. We are excited to see how God may use us to parent a child who needs a loving, Christian home.
Sometimes God provides for a need before you even know you have it. Now that always feels so good. And Greg and I have talked lately how sometimes it feels like He provides things for you in the 11th hour, when you are hanging on by a thread. That doesn't always feel as good. But today we are thanking God for being our PROVIDER early, what feels late to us, in the past, today, and in the future.