Monday morning began at 3:45a.m for me! I had been in the middle of a perfectly blissful sleep, when suddenly the baby awoke. Oh no, I groaned…here we go again! First she wanted to snuggle. Then she needed her nappy changed. Then she wanted some milk. Whilst waiting for the milk to cool, she spied the book box, and asked me to read her a story. Story read and milk now ready, I settled her back in her cot. Relieved that our night time escapade was over, I jumped back into bed and snuggled under the covers…but moments later, to my despair, she was moaning again, asking for another cuddle….In and out of bed went I – and in and out of the cot went Emily! Eventually after to-ing and fro-ing for about two hours, I finally dozed back off at about 5:55. Ironically, the alarm was set for 6:15! Don’t you just hate it when that happens?
Not a great start to a new week. I got up, made myself a cup of tea and sat down to contemplate the day ahead. My head began to spin a little, as I contemplated my enormous to-do list. I thought about the home-school lessons that I didn’t have time to plan over the weekend. I thought about the mountainous pile of washing that was spilling out of the laundry basket. I thought about the four extra people that were eating with us that evening and the shopping that needed to be done. I thought about the numerous piles of clothes that needed to be sorted through and re-homed following our recent loft conversion. I needed to order some new curtains and blinds. I needed to organise a venue for Emily’s forthcoming birthday party, plus call the hairdresser and book haircuts for Grace and I, oh and I was supposed to find a babysitter for the weekend…the list just seemed to go on and on.
I had two options. Run around like a mad woman trying to get everything done. Or run to God.
I knew from bitter experience that I needed to pray, or there would be trouble ahead. I didn’t have a clue where to start. I didn’t have enough time – or patience. I didn’t have enough energy. I certainly didn’t have enough sleep! As I faced the day, I felt completely stumped. It all seemed too overwhelming. Suddenly I remembered the story of Elisha and the widow who was in debt. She was a lot like me. She didn’t have nearly enough. Creditors were banging on her door. They were threatening to take her sons into slavery if she didn’t settle up soon. But there was no way she could pay. She was desperate for someone to help her.
So she called for Elisha, the prophet. Elisha said to her:
How can I help you? Tell me, what do you have in your house?”
And the widow responded truthfully, “Your servant has nothing there at all, except a little oil”.
I’m sure you know the rest of the story. It’s a story of miraculous provision. Elisha tells the woman to go and get a load of empty pots from her neighbours. Then he tells her to go into her house, close the door, and start pouring out the little bit of oil that she has into the empty pots. And so she does. To her amazement, she has enough to fill the first pot. And then another. And again another. To her surprise and wonder, the oil just keeps on flowing! Golden, oozing, glorious provision, poured straight out from heaven! The oil doesn’t run out until every pot is filled to the brim! Now she has enough to sell! And enough to pay her debts
Perhaps ‘not having enough’ isn’t such a bad place to be after all…because it’s only in times of lack that we really lean on God. I knew as I faced the day on Monday morning, that even if I tried my very best try, there was absolutely no way I was going to get though the day, without some serious help from on High. I needed God to show up. I needed His grace. I needed His strength! I needed Him to download a shed-load of patience…(and I needed it fast!)
2 Corinthians 12:9 tells us that “God’s power is made perfect in our weakness!”
What an amazing verse for the days when you are almost running on empty. Our weaknesses are really great big opportunities in disguise! Opportunities for God to show up! Opportunities for His miraculous provision. He is the God who loves to take the little that we have and multiply it. If the only thing you can offer God is a lil’ old jug of oil, He can make it overflow! If all you have in your lunch box is a few loaves of bread and a couple of fish, God can feed an army! If the only thing you have, is a miniscule grain of faith, God can use it to move mountains! If all you have left is a heart that says “yes” then you’re just the person God is looking for! If you don’t have enough today – don’t worry! God has plenty! All you need to do is ask Him. His grace is sufficient. His power is made perfect in weakness. Just give God your best and He’ll take care of the rest!
P.S…Want to know what happened after I prayed on Monday morning? At 9am, there was a knock at the door. It was a lovely friend from church who is a teacher. She said that I had been on her heart.. and she wanted to help. She came armed with Maths text books for my children, and a fun word game. And she offered to help me create a bank of fun activities for Home-School! Tears sprang into my eyes as I realized that God was sending His miraculous provision in the form of a thoughtful friend. Later that day, there was another knock at the door. It was my mum, sleeves rolled up, ready to help me sort out that pile of clothes and toys. She spent three hours helping me get things organized and took two loads of laundry off my hands! Now I have tidy bedrooms and for the first time this year, I can actually close my laundry basket! How amazing is our God!!
All of us have similar tales to tell. Why don’t you share with me your stories of God’s miraculous help from on High – I’d love to hear from you.