I have been trying out this whole “tent making” deal lately. I have some really marketable skills thanks to years of destroying my body day after day pounding nails, welding steel and stacking blocks. Nine years in the Air Force as a Structural Craftsman with two deployments to the Middle East helped round off these skills as we had to constantly “make it work” with limited resources as we maintained an Air Force base in Kuwait.
God is preparing me, today, for a tomorrow that I can’t see yet.
I have some awesome friends who are more than willing to throw me a side job here and there in between sessions of Prayer Resolution. It’s a great way to make a buck, stay in shape and keep my skills honed. All the while God has been very clear to me that He has called me to be a missionary, not a carpenter (a very godly trade, I might add).
I have some friends who are a part of our discipleship community who have recently moved into a new house where they are practicing some really cool community living. They asked me to come in and build a custom desk for them in their study. I drew up a draft of it on an amazing (free) program called SketchUp and showed up Saturday morning ready to roll. It always amazes me how many tools are needed for one project like this. In spite of the very cold rain that interrupted me at midday, here’s the final result:
That night I sent them a receipt for the labor and material. I had put 10 hours of work into it from design to completion. As I was going to bed, however, I started getting the impression (Michelle helped me figure this out) that God was saying, “Don’t charge them for labor.” In fact, as I slept that night I kept waking up thinking about it. At one point I even wondered if I should just get up and send the email already so that I could finally get some sleep without God waking me up every other hour!
By the morning I felt like God had not only said, “Don’t charge for labor,” but also, “I will pay you for the labor.” So I sent the email. I wasn’t sure that it was God. It was mostly just an impression or vague thought that didn’t want to go away. But, I’ve learned to trust that nudging. In the end, God isn’t going to fail to provide for me because I was too darn generous and willing to help some people out in my community. God’s resources are unlimited! I’m always as rich as all the promises of God.
Don’t lose heart when you see the numbers. There’s no measure for the faith we bring.
-Josh Garrels, “Rise”
So, I stood on the fact that my Heavenly Daddy is really good at taking care of His kids (me and my family).
Later that day while at the Sunday morning service at my church, Substance, I was talking to a guy who was interested in joining Immerse and reached into my bag to grab a brochure for him. There I found an envelope addressed to Michelle and I:
As you could probably guess, knowing my Royal Daddy, it was a quite a bit more than I would have made from charging for labor for the desk. My God is alive and well. He knows my needs and will not fail to take care of His kids. He hears prayers and is powerful to respond.
I don’t know how long that envelope had been in my bag, it could have been a few weeks, but it’s it just like Him to time it that way? (I hope whoever gave us that money reads this and is encouraged! You are being used by God. You are hearing correctly and He is really leading you.)
I’m starting to learn how to trust Him.