Thursday, August 21, 2008

Gifts from God

We hear stories on tv, or read in the newspapers, that someone has had something wonderful happen in their life, whether it be an accomplishment, being rescued from a dangerous situation, getting that job or position, becoming a parent after years of unsuccess, etc.
What amazes me is when something good or miraculous happens, that no thanks or credit is given to the Lord above.

Today's verses in James 1: 17-18 speaks about this, "Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the father of heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. He chose togive us birth through the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of all he created".

Not only is every gift good and perfect, but so is the Giver. God is THE source of all light - physical, intellectual, moral, and spiritual, and He does not change.

A few years ago I was working at a job for a local car dealership, and I thought I would be there for a long time. It didn't require anything but the ability to offer great customer service, handle some petty cash, and take payments from customers. It was easy work, but stressful in that the language and behavior of the majority of the employees was very unGodly. On August 16, I was reading my Bible before going into work and Proverbs 16:3 jumped out at me. It says, "Commit to the Lord whatever you do and your plans will succeed". I told the Lord that I needed to totally commit my job to him, and trust him to help me deal with the atmosphere there. That day, after coming back from my lunch break, I was called into the office of the controller, and without notice or reason, I was told I was no longer needed, and to pick up my things and leave immediately. Let me tell you, I was steaming mad! Jobs weren't easy to come by in my somewhat small town, and I needed to work to help out with the household finances. That verse kept coming back to me, and I didn't understand how God could let something like this happen - I'd just commited my job to him, and in an instant, it was taken away!

I began to update my resume, sending it out to any and everything I was qualified for. This went on for almost a month with no success. During that time, the Lord was speaking to me; I was spending more time in prayer and in reading the Word. It was the light from his Word that I realized that it was when I gave him control of the situation I'd been in, that he gave me the GIFT of being fired from there. He was speaking to my heart not only through his Word, but also through songs on the local Christian radio station. I began to feel his peace, and knew that he was preparing the way for me to have another job in HIS time.

Also during that time of unemployment, I had my 48th birthday. I decided that morning that I wasn't going to go out to the office where they help you with your resume and send you out on jobs that you're qualified for; I called my oldest sister and asked her if she wanted to just "hang out", to which she said yes.

Before leaving the house to go pick her up, I thought I would clean out the junk mail from an email account that I rarely used or checked. In sifting through all the unwanted mail, there was one that really jumped out at me - it said that someone had found my profile on, and had sent me an email. I followed the link to where I could see who it was, and there in my Inbox, was the most unexpected letter I could have ever imagined. It was from my sister Angie, whom I hadn't seen since I was 13, and she was 6. (We share the same father, but different mothers.) I was turning 48 that day, so do the math. She said that she had been searching for me through the internet for awhile, and was afraid to contact me because she'd been led to believe that none of her siblings wanted anything to do with her. The truth was just the opposite of what she'd been told - all four of her sisters and her brother loved her, and had wondered for over 30 years what had happened to her, and if we'd ever see or talk to her again.

I immediately emailed her back, and told her how elated I was to hear from her, and that we had a lot of catching up to do after all those years past. I told her that we all loved her very much, and that email from her had to be one of the best gifts I'd ever been given for my birthday.

Not only did the Lord put me in a new job within days after my birthday, but the act of Him working out all the details of putting my sister back into my life, and giving me that for my birthday will forever be a reminder that EVERY good gift is perfect, as is The ONE who gives.

I couldn't stop saying, "Thank you Jesus, thank you Jesus"'s the only thing that would come out of my mouth!

Don't take for granted those things that seem trivial in the eyes of man; things that people say, 'luck was on my side'. I don't believe in coincidences - I believe that a coincidence is God doing a miracle and remaining anonymous.

As I am writing this, I had to pause for a minute because my cell phone was ringing. I thought it was my husband telling me he had gotten to work safely. (We are going through Tropical Storm Fay at the moment). When I opened my phone to answer it, I saw on the caller ID, "Angie's Cell". THERE AGAIN was an unexpected, and wonderful gift from the Lord! I told her, "You're not going to believe this, but I was just writing about you, and how you found me, in my blog today"!

No matter what situation or circumstance you are in, look for the gifts that God is showering down on you.



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