JANUARY 29, 2015
Several weeks ago, I asked our Sunday School Class at Montavilla Baptist Church to share with me some of their “God Sighting Events”. I began with one of my own from the past which I will share with you here.
My husband Doug, our two year old son Jared and I were living in Connecticut with my husband’s mother, Grandma Brown. My husband had recently been laid off and though constantly looking for work, could not find a job. It was 1991 when the economy in Connecticut took a nosedive and businesses were shutting down or putting a freeze on expenditures which included hiring. We had heard of the possibility of work out West in Portland, Oregon where I was originally from and my family still lived. Doug flew out to Portland searching for work and found a very low paying job with the Bonneville Power Administration as a Word Processor. Now my husband had his Masters of Divinity and this job was not a reflection of his ability or his education but he took the job so that he could start bringing in money for our family. He was living on the West Coast with my family and I was living on the East Coast with his family. This was going to go on indefinitely because we had no money to make a move and his salary would just cover the basic bills.
My family had no money to help us move and his family refused to move us again because they had generously funded our move from Portland to Connecticut four years earlier. I was told that sometimes life was like this and couples had to live apart for economic purposes. Though I loved my mother in law dearly, I missed the Pacific NW, my family and most of all my husband. So, through tears of frustration I cried to my Father in Heaven about the situation.
We were attending a small Baptist Church in Connecticut at the time. The day after my prayer, I went to the afternoon church potluck for fellowship. One of the ladies I knew through teaching Sunday School to her children, asked how I was doing with Doug gone. I honestly shared how hard it was being on different coasts and how much I wanted to join him in Portland. Jody’s face lit up as she told me that she had just been transferred to Portland through her company ADP and was moving in two weeks. Then she told me how she had rented a big moving truck twice as big as she needed to carry her household goods to Portland because the Lord had spoken to her to do so. She became excited and told me that God had done that for me! I was doubtful if we could share in the cost of the truck but she assured me that the bigger truck wasn’t anymore money out of her pocket than the smaller one had been and her company had given her money for the move. We could transport our things across country for FREE!
Was this coincidence or ordained by my Heavenly Father in answer to my prayer and His plan for our lives? Following our move together, Jody has been a friend of ours for 24 years here in Portland, Oregon. Not only did God provide our transportation but He also provided a friendship of a life time. Skeptics might suggest it was a fortuitous coincidence of random good luck. What are the chances of someone moving to the same city, at the exact same time and then having rented a bigger truck than needed because they felt prompted by God to do so? It is not random. It is the work of God in the lives of His children.
There have been many times since, that circumstances have challenged my faith. God doesn’t always answer my prayers so quickly and magnanimously as this one prayer was answered. However, He reminds me that He can do anything with difficult circumstances and I shouldn’t try to “box” Him in with my small expectations. I am challenged to let Him do His great work which is better than I can imagine. I am challenged to trust Him to work all things together for good, not only in my life but those He brings into “my equations” so that He solves not just one problem but many at one time.
Later I would remember His provision so that I could practice faith when my husband lost his job 4 weeks after we moved and he lost his sight temporarily during that lay off period but that’s another story. Doug has now been with Bonneville Power Administration for 24 years doing jobs that didn’t even exist in 1991. We are thankful for work that pays the bills and for Doug’s sight, always knowing that there are no guarantees of health and wealth in this life. However, there are guarantees that our Heavenly Father watches over us and is always faithful. We are not to worry about tomorrow and we are to trust Him for our needs today.
I will begin to share the stories of others from our Sunday School Class. I was touched with the greatness of our God as they shared their stories, often crying from the great emotion of knowing how much God cared for them through these events, God Sightings, in their lives.
A moving truck never fails to remind me of God’s Provision for me.
DECEMBER 15, 2014
Each December we hear a report from our local meteorologist that gives the Santa Claus sighting on Christmas Eve. We all know that the sighting is not true but we get a warm feeling of nostalgia from those long gone days of childhood dreams. We all wanted to believe there was a Santa Claus. Someone kind, who would forgive our small sins, listen to our dreams and would bring about those dreams into reality on Christmas Day through beautifully wrapped presents under the Christmas tree. Those of us who had packages under our tree, were loved by those who had wrapped those gifts.
God sightings are not like the Santa sighting. God sightings are seeing evidences of God’s work in human hearts and lives. Our Family Pastor at Montavilla Baptist Church, Kevin Stone, likes to ask our Sunday School class of adults about sharing God Sightings each week. Every week someone in class has something to share. What constitutes a God Sighting? Scoffers would ask, “How do you know it was God?” It all depends on one’s perspective.