“And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.”
Philippians 4:19 (NIV)
We talked yesterday about how God can bless us through circumstances that seem perfect but also through circumstances that are less than ideal. Last year God used our garage sale to pour blessings on our family. Even though He provided more monetarily than I expected, the main blessings we received centered around Him showing me His provisions for our family. This year, even though the circumstances leading up to the garage sale were less-than-ideal, our family chose to dedicate the sale to Him again, trusting this time He would provide blessings as He saw fit. We weren’t looking for monetary blessings, but instead we had faith He would supply what He knew we would need.
I love how when we honestly choose to live according to God’s Word, life instructions according to my Father, blessings always follow. To say we were blessed again was an understatement.
I’m not sure how the conversation began, but I started talking with a couple who arrived at our house and found out they were from Lancaster, PA. My face lit up as I told them when I used to live out East thirty years ago, that was a favorite place we would visit every year. In fact, I so wanted to connect with them, I texted my dad to ask the name of where we would go every year. One conversation led to another and we ended up talking for over thirty minutes – sharing our hearts which were connected in God’s love, talking about different ministries they were involved in, sharing the ministry God has laid on our family’s heart, etc. Not only did they walk away blessed by what we had to offer tangibly, but I pray they were as blessed as I was by the divine connection we made. I feel like I made two new friends for life, despite the many miles that separate us ten months out of the year.
The neat thing? This couple only comes to visit the midwest in April and August. If we had the garage sale two weeks ago, they wouldn’t have been here because it was July. We would have missed the chance to be blessed by them.
An older gentleman stopped by later in the afternoon and we struck up a conversation as well. He ended up sharing with me how he and his wife “never could have kids” so they are foster parents to two boys, ages three and seven. The love that he has for those boys was tangible in his eyes. He ended up sharing how they are probably going to lose them to a relative despite having had them live in their home for over a year. He was fiercely attached and incredibly protective of the boys, not born from his DNA, but in his heart. As a former foster care/adoption worker, we were able to talk at a deeper level then ordinarily and I was able to share with him in his pain. I’m still thinking about that family and told him I would pray for them and for God to allow the best ending to occur. He left on Friday with tentative plans to come back the next day.
Two hours after I had closed for the day, a woman pulled up and began looking around. I yelled out to her, “I make deals,” and she acknowledged my statement with a nod of her head. After talking with her teenagers, she approached me and asked about a few smaller items. Then she asked about the three-piece activity center we had, one of our larger items that didn’t sell last year. After talking with her further, I found out she is starting a daycare and was looking at adding that piece of equipment for her kids to play on. I excitedly began sharing with her that is what I used it for (gasp), seven years ago and how wonderful it was with all age groups. That opened a line of communication and we talked for about 20 minutes. I was able to pass along to her the useful information that was given to me when I first started out many years ago. I felt like I had met another kindred spirit. When all was finished, I pray she felt blessed with the price and God blessed us as well by allowing it to sell.
Last year I had wondered why we couldn’t sell the activity center. I thought, “I like it. It’s a wonderful piece of equipment – what are we doing wrong?” We put the same price on it this year as last year…and I shared with the woman who bought it the story of not selling it last year. I stated, “I think God knew you weren’t ready yet and He wanted us to save it for you.” I don’t know if we share a relationship with God or not, but I pray through our interactions, if she doesn’t have a relationship with God, a seed was planted
I used to dread all the work involved with putting together a garage sale. From the past two years, God has showed me that my life is about so much more than a single event. Everything we do, no matter how ordinary it seems to us, God can use to bless others. First, we need to offer it to Him, then step back and watch Him work. Always being willing to do our part but waiting to see who God wants to bless and what He has planned.
Do you see God in the ordinary moments in your life? What is one time where you saw “something bigger” than just the event happening around you?
© Cheri Swalwell 2014