Monday, January 24, 2011

real-life miracle.

"Everyone needs compassion,
A love that's never failing;
Let mercy fall on me.
Everyone needs forgiveness,
The kindness of a Savior,
The Hope of Nations."
"Mighty to Save" by Ben Fielding and Reuben Morgan

Sometimes - no, all the time - I don't like to admit that I'm the one who needs compassion, mercy, a hand up, someone's help, relief, a miracle. I like to think that I'm okay, that I am the one who can bless others, that somehow God will let me rely on my own skills instead of on Him and on the friends He's given me.

When people think of miracles, they think of healing, or water to wine, or other impossible things like that. They think of premature babies thriving, babies being born at all, and older people living longer. "Miracle" is applied to advancements in science, to pleasant coincidences, to happy thrift-store finds and open parking spaces.

But a miracle is a supernatural act of God. Sometimes God works through people, like the incredibly generous, tender-hearted person (or people) who allowed God to use them to bless us today.

We've been struggling to make ends meet financially, and we're planning to take a student loan to be able to pay for my schooling (read: more school loan debt, when we're already paying back $XX,XXX). It has been very hard for me to admit that I can't pay for things like the books I need for class or the professional conference that I really should attend. It has be so hard to not buy more than the absolutely essential groceries and to not make more trips than necessary. We've turned down the heat, used as few cell minutes as possible, and paid only the bills that loomed directly ahead. It has been hard to admit that I need help - that when I got to the counter at the store last week, the clerk paid for part of my bill with the "take a penny, leave a penny" dish. I almost cried then.

God had a blessing in mind, though!

The envelope had no return address on it, and it's postmarked at a city near us. To the friend (or friends?) who sent it: We've been truly blessed through you. Thank you. Your generosity is amazing - I'm in tears as I write this. I'm so thankful to God for a friend like you. Thank you for being the way that God meets our needs. We're amazed at His provision for us, and so very grateful.

"My heart is filled with thankfulness
To Him who walks beside,
Who floods my weaknesses with strength,
And causes fears to fly.

Whose every promise is enough
For every step I take,
Sustaining me with arms of love
And crowning me with grace."
"My Heart is Filled" by Keith Getty and Stuart Townend

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