Friday, February 13, 2015

Faith Builders: Thank You, Lord!

Kathy Barnes lives in Littleton, Colorado. She works in the pharmaceutical industry, but spent 4 months without work. Many of us know how stressful that can be. 

Kathy shared her story with me, recalling that during her job search she’d prayed “frantically” for a job. She’d found herself caught in the rut of praying for things to happen the way she wanted them to and according to her timeline. This included interviews, returned calls, and a job. 

Then, Kathy heard a pastor’s message about praying with gratitude. The message touched her heart and she began to thank the Lord for all the things she had, instead of spending so much time begging Him for the things she didn’t have. 

When she stopped constantly (and frantically) asking and started showing thankfulness for God’s current provision, well, in Kathy’s words, “Wow, did that feel good!”

  • She was thankful for her husband, Trent.
  • She was thankful for their home and the financial ability to continue to meet their bills even without her income.
  • She had time for Trent and could make breakfast for him, prepare lunch to take to work, and provide dinner when he returned home. 
  • She had more time for cleaning and caring for their home than when she was working.
  • She spent devotional time with God, in Bible study, with her sister’s women’s group, and a lot of time in prayer.
  • She was thankful for so much more! 

I’ll allow Kathy to fill in the rest of the story, before and after her focus on gratitude.  These are her words:

“Several times I would get down and no amount of prayer seemed to help. Many days were spent just sitting and crying because nothing was going 'my way'. One day while driving, it occurred to me that it was not that I was praying wrong or that God was not listening, but that the evil one was trying to usurp me. I know I said (and it was probably out loud) ‘Get out of my life, satan, I do not have time for you.’ I felt a weight lift from my heart and a quiet, warm feeling that everything would work out in God’s time, according to His plan. I just had to be patient. This is much easier when you know He is in your corner!

“During this time, Trent was trying to help me job hunt by watching different websites. He got it in his head that maybe we should both apply to the Indian Health Services facility in Shiprock NM. This would mean moving. His thought was that it would be just a few years of a lower cost of living, and housing prices, then we could move back. Anyway, the last thing I wanted to think about was moving, especially to the Four Corners area. I did not want to go but he talked me into driving down and meeting with the pharmacy manager in Tec Nos Pas AZ, about 50 miles from Shiprock. We left home at 3 am to be there at 10 am.

“Trent was driving and I was sitting in the car, in the dark, in the rain, praying for a safe trip, that God would show us if this was the right thing to do, all of those "is this right?" and "please lead us" thoughts. This is where the most amazing thing happened. I don't know if I heard Him or felt Him, but God said 'Trent needs to make this trip so I can show him that this is not where I want you to be.' My eyes flew open, I think I even looked around to see where that had come from. From there on I could look at the trip as an adventure, and enjoy the chance to see new country. 

“It turns out we would have taken a 30% pay cut, and had to move into government housing.  After meeting the manager at what was a beautiful facility, we walked outside and Trent said 'well, that won't work!' That was Oct 3rd. I received a job offer with King Soopers on Nov 5! God was truly with me/us that day and all the way through my search!

I have two scripture passages on sticky notes in my office where I can see them.
      Ps 138.8 ‘The Lord will fulfill His purpose for me; Your love, oh Lord, endues forever.’
      Heb 10.23 ‘Let us hold tightly without wavering to the hope we affirm, for God can be trusted to keep his promise.’”

Kathy’s story encourages us to THANK the Lord, daily, for all that He provides. It inspires us to take our eyes off of our circumstance and focus on Him. I pray it helps to build our faith.

I’ll add one more Scripture:

“You will keep him in perfect peace,
Whose mind is stayed on You,
Because he trusts in You.”

Isaiah 26:3 (NKJV)

Continue the conversation!  Leave your comments below, or use Facebook or Twitter.

Be Strengthened Today, By His Word,
Psalm 119:28


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