Monday, December 30, 2013

God is in the Details - 58

I promised to tell you about the crazy ways I've seen God moving in my life over the last 6 months.  I'm not short on ways I've seen Him in action, just short on time to write it all down!  But when I think about all He has done for me, I hang my head in shame for not making the time to tell of His good works.  So, let this be the day that I shift from waiting until there is time to share what He's done to making the time to shout out what He has done.

If you've been reading my blog for awhile, you know that a few years ago I saw 58:The Film which greatly impacted my life.  So much so that the ripples still continue daily for me.

Our church had a challenge this fall to pray daily for 25 days straight.  We were instructed to pray at the same time of day in the same location for each of the 25 days.  I participated in the challenge and implemented my pastor's suggestion of using small note cards for each of the prayers.  I quickly filled up note card after note card with things I wanted to pray about.  I included friends who were going through tough times, prayers for Feven's future, prayers for my godchildren, prayers for our marriage, prayers for our finances, and prayers for our church.

But then there was also this one random note card with a few verses from Isaiah 58.  It was the one card that listed only scripture, and there wasn't anything specific that I was praying about in regards to it, I just read it daily during prayer time.  It's a verse that grabs me at my core and makes my heart beat in time with God's.  It's Isaiah 58:6-10 where God is calling out his people on how they've been practicing religion with no heart or depth.  They've been doing it for show:

"Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen:
to loose the chains of injustice
and untie the cords of the yoke,
to set the oppressed free
and break every yoke? 
Is it not to share your food with the hungry
and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter-
when you see the naked, to cloth him,
and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood? 
Then your light will break forth like the dawn,
and your healing will quickly appear;
then your righteousness will go before you,
and the glory of the Lord will be your rear guard.
Then you will call, and the Lord will answer;
you will cry for help, and he will say: Here am I. 
If you do away with the yoke of oppression,
with the pointing finger and malicious talk
and if you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry
and satisfy the needs of the oppressed,
then your light will rise in the darkness,
and your night will become like the noonday."

Each morning at 6:00am, I'd sit down with my prayer cards, pray for all the requests, and read this scripture.

One of my prayers was an "out there" prayer.  I was praying that God would provide for us financially in a big way so we would have a fully-funded adoption account by the end of the year.  I wanted enough money in our adoption bank account that we would be able to get the word there was a child who needed a family, and we could write one big check and pay for every expense we needed to in order to welcome that child into our family.

I didn't have a clue how this could happen.  I mean, each month we were faithfully tucking away money into our adoption account, so we were eventually going to get there, but this was a bold prayer to have it completed by the end of the year.

Once during a discussion on prayer at church, a (brilliant, highly-spiritual, God-inspired) child in our church who was 11 years old said that a good prayer is one that "is possible, but highly unlikely."  So I continued praying that  God would fully fund our adoption account by the end of the calendar year.  It was a possible dream, but highly unlikely.

One day, out of the blue, I got a phone call from my college roommate.  She said she was going to host a Noonday party the following week to help me raise  money for our adoption.

WHAT?!?!  I was blown away and in awe of this surprise gift of time and energy.  And this is a friend who is chasing THREE children of her own around each day, one of whom has significant medical needs because of  genetic disorder and recent kidney transplant.  I know, right?!?  How does she have time for this?  A highly unlikely person to host a party...I saw it as a direct answer to the daily prayer I'd been praying for God to provide all the necessary funds for our second adoption.  God was working through her to show up big time in my family's life.

But wait - it gets better.  Noonday is a company that works with artisans around the world to provide them with a fair and competitive wage so they can provide for their families and work with dignity.  And do you know where their company name Noonday comes from?

Isaiah 58:10 - "and if you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, then your light will rise in the darkness, and your night will become like the noonday."

The very verse I was praying daily was the answer to another of my prayer cards that God would provide for us financially.

Only God could have come up with that!

She hosted the party and we were blessed to have many friends present at the party and virtually via social media who participated in the event.  Afterward, a check was sent directly to our adoption agency, and now that money waits there while we wait for God to bring our child into our lives.

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