The Faith of a Child

One summer my daughter decided she wanted to learn to play the piano and wanted a piano of her own. This was no small request as funds for a piano were certainly not in our budget. Her father was in school, and I was the only financial support for our family. I told her I would pray with her about the piano. We wouldn’t let anyone know, and we would simply trust that if God wanted her to have a piano He would provide one.

The Faith of a Child

One day my pastor’s wife called and asked if my daughter wanted a piano. She had a piano that her parents had given her when she was twelve, and none of her children wanted this turn of the century upright piano that she dearly loved. She decided to pray about the piano, and God directed her to my daughter.

I explained to my pastor’s wife that we had been praying for a piano but had told no one about it because we wanted to know that if God provided a piano that it was truly from Him. She was overjoyed to know that she had heard clearly from the Lord and that it met a need that we had been praying about. We made arrangements to pick up the piano, and my young daughter learned a great lesson in trusting God to supply her needs. Paul writes in Philippians:

And my God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:19

This is a scripture that has been very important to me for many years, and it is one that my daughter truly understood at the age of nine.

I won’t say that my daughter has always had everything that she ever wanted, but she certainly has always had a very strong and positive faith in God and that He would supply her needs. Her faith has always encouraged my own faith through the years.

My prayer is that others will see that this lesson of waiting for God’s provision laid the foundation for a lifetime of trusting in God for my nine year old daughter. As parents, we don’t always need to give our children everything that they want. Sometimes the best gift we can give them is a lesson in waiting on God’s provision.

About the Writer:
Anna Schaefer leads the W.E. C.A.R.E. team for the Women’s Ministry of First Baptist Dallas, a widow, a mom, a grandmother and grateful to the Lord for giving her opportunities to share with other women in several ministries through First Baptist Dallas.

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The Unmet Need

One of the reasons I enjoy writing for Yada Yada is that it helps keep me accountable to God. When the topics make their way around to me and I find myself up to write, it is always an opportunity to grow and a challenge to stomp out lies in my own mind more than a desire to list facts. This month’s question, the Provision of God, has and continues to surface in my reflections quite often. I am a single mom. Many days I feel a strain from what I consider to be unmet needs. The reality is that all my needs have been met — quite generously and abundantly actually. The unpleasant truth is that I have an abundance of desires that apparently don’t qualify as needs. Not exactly what one wants to hear! However, God is so kind to correct His children in love. And when the Lord corrects, hope is intertwined.

For me, the things I desire are not in and of themselves evil; however, an impatient heart is.

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.” Galatians 5:22-23

The following verse (“now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires”) reminds me that sometimes, as one who belongs to Christ, I am called to dissociate myself from former desires that are not God-honoring. However, more often than not, this verse convicts me of my dependence on God to dislodge the subtle attitudes of flesh that seed fruit on much deeper heart level. As Jesus said in Mark 7:20, it is what comes from a man’s heart that defiles him. Fleshly attitudes are just as sinful as carnal actions, and usually come one right after the other (James 1:15).

So now, when I feel annoyed, impatient, frustrated or discouraged by an unfulfilled desire or strained circumstance; it is like that flashing warning The Unmet Needlight on my car’s dashboard — a gauge that I definitely don’t want to ignore. Galatians 5:16 says, “walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh.” That verse has become my solution: the desire that I use to fight desire. I make it my number one pursuit to abide in Him — knowing that He promises to abide with me and bear His fruit in and through me along the way.

“He who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.” John 5:5

God is the only one I know able to turn my “unmet needs” (i.e. desires) into a fertile vineyard of the choicest fruit: godliness.

About the Writer:
Lyndsay has been many things in her past, but no career, experience, or calling define her more than the desire to follow after Christ. At present, she teaches movement classes and works as a wellness consultant in addition to raising her daughter to know and love the Lord.

The Great De-bait

In Christian circles a great debate is raging. Decades long is this debate. As women walking through this life we have seen, heard, and (dare I say) even judged both sides.

To stay home or to work outside the home…that is the question.

Now, before you click the “X,” I have 400 more words to show you that Christian women are taking the bait of the deceiver, and rendering the body of Christ useless as we quarrel in circles about what is right on this topic. As believers maybe we quarrel more in our minds than ever physically getting into a quarrel with someone. Still the debate, the guilt, and the deception rage on. These things I’ll argue are the bait.De-bait

When our focus is on the question about whether staying at home is right or wrong so in lies the bait. The deception here is that we are looking at the rule and not the Ruler. Jesus is the standard. It’s not your work friends, your church friends, or even your pocketbook.

Not to give this accuser of ours too much credit, but doesn’t this sound like bait? When our thoughts go to what our peers, employers, or society tell us instead of Jesus; are we not rendered useless, taking the bait by chewing on that thought? If the question is to stay home or not, isn’t that for the Savior to answer?

“Therefore as you have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him.” Colossians 2:6

The LORD is my God. He spoke to my heart, and I responded to Him. This began our relationship. My relationship with Him consists of me talking to Him, obeying Him, asking Him what He thinks, and reading about what He thinks in His word. It is me meditating on who He is and who He says I am. When the thought is on the argument, we aren’t telling people that we’ve been with the Savior. And if we aren’t telling them we have been with the Savior, we are not telling them there is a way to get to Him.

Isn’t that tricky of the accuser? He tricked ME into thinking my bank account is what decides whether I am to stay home with my children. It was about me asking my LORD, who then ANSWERED, showing me He is my Provider! I have a friend who is called by the LORD to be a mom who works outside the home. She asked and toiled with the Almighty about what to do and He answered in very specific detail, lighting the way with each step. When we give people these kinds of details we cast seeds of faith.

We have access by faith in Jesus to the Almighty. This is the miracle of all miracles! Don’t think for a moment the devil wants you focused on details like our access to the Lord. You might just tell someone the Gospel.

About the Writer:
Mindy Truly is the wife to her patient and much better half – Jeff, and a reluctant (initially) homeschool mom to their 2 sons. She earned her BS in Environmental Design from Texas A&M 8 years prior to being called to leave her safe career to become a stay at home mom – something she had no experience in. For this and several other things the LORD has called her family to do, God has shown Himself faithful to provide for His call. She loves to encourage women with the gospel…the gift that keeps on giving (Colossians 2:6).

Remember

I have bags full of old journals filled with my teenage thoughts, problems, questions, and prayers. Since I work with teenagers, I will often open those old journals for the purpose of “research,” and in doing so, I remember the Lord’s past provision. Whether it was financially, emotionally, or relationally; the Lord has provided for me in more ways than I can count. Being reminded of my moments of desperation and His perfect provision time after time is really the reason I hold on to those journals.God's Provision

When was the last time you simply recalled the many ways in which God has provided for you?

If you feel like God has forgotten you, your needs, and your wants; that may be a tough question. You may feel abandoned by God much like the Israelite people did as they stood on the edge of Canaan.

“…the whole congregation said to them, ‘If only we had died in the land of Egypt! Or if only we had died in this wilderness! Why has the Lord brought us to this land to fall by the sword, that our wives and children should become victims? Would it not be better for us to return to Egypt?’” Numbers 14:2-3 (NKJV)

At that moment, all the Israelites could see was a land filled with enemies, giants, and insurmountable odds. They felt like God had abandoned them and that they would have been better dying in Egypt as slaves. The fear they faced as they looked into the Promised Land, blinded them to the power of God. All at once, they forgot the incredible ways God had already provided for them along the way. God Himself said to Moses,

“How long will these people reject Me? And how long will they not believe Me, with all the signs which I have performed among them?”  Numbers 14:11

Here are some of the ways God had already demonstrated His power and provision:

  • He sent the ten plagues
  • He went before them to lead the way in a pillar of cloud and a pillar of fire
  • He parted the Red Sea and dried the ground so the people could cross over
  • He made bitter, undrinkable water into sweet, refreshing water
  • He rained down bread from heaven to feed them each day and made the bread taste like honey
  • He provided quail so the people could eat meat
  • He made water flow out of a rock
  • He brought a miraculous victory over the army of Amalek

Despite these miraculous acts of God, the people of Israel stood fearfully immoveable just outside the land they had been promised. They refused to enter because they did not believe their God was able to give them what He had promised.

Is this true of your life today? Are you fearfully standing just outside the blessing of God because you are struggling to believe He will provide what He has promised? Let me encourage you to take a lesson from the Israelite people who “…could not enter in because of unbelief” (Hebrews 3:19). Do not allow unbelief to keep you from the blessings of God. Stand firm today on the truth that the same God who provided in the past will provide for your future.

About the Writer:
Kate has the privilege of serving as the Girls Ministry Director at Frist Baptist Dallas.  She has a heart for helping girls come to know and build a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. She is also contributor to Lifeway Girls Ministry resources.