I was going to title this blog "I Need a Miracle" but then God brought something to my attention. The title of the blog is what the focus of the blog is about. I don't want this post to be all about my need for a miracle. I want it to be about elevating God so that we receive the miracles He has for us! Sure, I need a miracle, in fact, quite a BIG one or many little ones, but God operates in miracles and signs and wonders, so why should I be worried that He will not meet my need?!? God is a God of miracles. He did so many things that are literally impossible as recorded in the Bible, and that is the God I believe in. So, why should I think He cannot meet my miraculous needs just as He did back in the days when the Bible was written? All that being said, He told me that Elevating God is going to be a key to my success in receiving the miraculous needs I have because it is by believing (faith) that we receive.
I'm sure you've heard the saying before "don't tell God how big your problems are, tell your problems how big your God is". Well, the Lord reminded me of this when I was feeling overwhelmed by the extreme amount of financial provision I need in the short amount of time I have, not including my need for a job in a small city where many other students will be in the same boat as me. Although sayings like the one above can be "cliché", they are true. It can be so easy to get overwhelmed by our problems, circumstances, and/or needs and forget how BIG our God is. It's so easy to become discouraged because what we need is impossible. But as believers, we must remember that NOTHING is IMPOSSIBLE ... WITH GOD. Therefore, when we connect with Him, He is able to do incredible things! Even the impossible! I've seen God do incredible things in my life and I've seen Him provide financially in miraculous ways before, but that doesn't mean I'm an expert at trusting in His provision. It just means I know HE is ABLE and "If it's God's will, He will pay the bill". It means I know His character is faithful and He will provide. But even with this knowledge, I can still lack faith sometimes. When calculating my finances, I discovered I am truly facing the impossible again. And this is when God urged me to write about His faithfulness with financial provision in the past. I believe He will use this time of looking back to remind me of how big He is and shift my focus from the "problem" , "mountain", or "impossibility", and onto trusting in His ability to provide. I don't think He wants me to live my life worrying about how I will meet these needs. I think He wants me to live my life excited to see how He will meet my needs, because that is His job, not mine. And I believe He wants the same for you, too!
In 2010, I decided to take my first missions trip to Africa. It cost $3,650.00 for the entire trip. I cannot remember how long I needed to raise that money, but God provided it all. In fact, He actually provided more than I needed. In each person's suitcase, we brought with us Audio Bibles "Talking Bibles" that were in the native language of the land we were traveling to, and God put it on my heart to raise the money for every single Talking Bible that I carried in my suitcase. And, guess what? He did. In fact, I accidently took more than the given amount of Bibles, which was 50, and had 52 or 53 because my roommate and I got ours mixed up. And, every single Bible in my suitcase was paid for before my trip. Praise God!! At $50.00 each, that is around $2,650.00 that He provided. Altogether that makes $6,300.00 ! And all of this money was raised simply by fundraising, therefore I relied fully on others to meet this need. Of course ultimately God provided, but it was through others. The scripture God gave me to meditate on in the process of all of this for this trip was: "Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us" Ephesians 3:20
In 2011, I decided to return Africa for another missions trip. I remember the team leader saying to me "If money is your only reason for not going to Ghana, you should definitely go. God will provide." I had no job, no money, and was in college full-time. I knew I was supposed to step out in faith, again, though, and guess what?!? Yup, God provided yet again ALL of the finances I needed for this trip. It cost a total of $3,650.00. Although He didn't put it on my heart to pay for the Audio Bibles this time, He did put it on my heart to stay in Ghana longer than my team and live at the Orphanage we would be spending some time with. That meant I needed more money because it cost money to stay there as well as additional expenses such as food and changing my flight home so that I didn't return at the same time as my team. I am not sure how much that all was in total, but I'd guess it ended up being around $1,500.00 , making a total of $5,150.00 that He provided. The scripture God gave me for this trip was: "And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus." Philippians 4:19
In 2012, I decided to attend a Missionary Training school called YWAM (Youth With A Mission). The school I attended was called "Fire & Fragrance" and it focused on Missions, Prayer, and Worship. It was located in Kona, Hawaii and my outreach was to England and Germany. I spent three months in Hawaii and two months in Europe. I'm not sure the exact amount of funds I needed to raise for this all, but I estimated it is somewhere around $10,000.00 in five months. That includes the school itself, travels, and extra expenses such eating out and getting coffee with friends. Again, God provided it all. And it came through others. I cannot recall a specific Bible verse that God gave me for this season.
In 2013, I decided to go to back to Africa again. This time, Tanzania. I needed to raise around $3,000.00 . I had a job at the time so was able to contribute personally in addition to fundraising. Also, this isn't a financial need, but it was a desire I had and God met it. I always saw myself in Africa wearing long skirts, colored V-neck shirts, and accessories. I always wanted to go back to Africa and look cute while I was there. (It must be the girly side of me) And, God provided enough money for me to be able to meet this desire of my heart and purchase some long-skirts. Also, God provided all that I needed for this trip financially.
In 2013, I decided to apply for another Training school and I got accepted! I will begin in September of 2013 and finish in May of 2014. In the middle of the school year, I plan to take a missions trip to which the location is unknown at this time. The tuition for this school is $4,400.00 and it is not something I can fundraise for. In addition to that, I need a job that will give me 30 hours/week where I can budget for $850/month! It is a ministry training school and I am responsible for paying for my own tuition. However, I will fundraise for the missions trip because that will be an additional cost. Although I am currently working as a nanny, I also have monthly bills to pay. With my budget and hours as of now, it is unrealistic that I will be able to save enough money for tuition by the due date. (It is due September 9th at Registration or November 8th on a payment plan) When you look at how much money I am making and how much money I need, it is literally impossible. Now this is a completely different step of faith for me! However, I am believing and trusting that God will provide for all of my needs. I mean, He told me He has Bethel covered for me! But, to be quite honest, when calculating in depth my financial need before and during school, along with a job with thirty hours each week that I have not received yet, it was overwhelming! I was beginning to think I am crazy for even thinking it will all come together. But then God reminded me that in order to receive the miracle I need, I must Elevate God. Therefore, I cannot allow my mind to dwell on how great my financial need is and instead I need to dwell on how great my God! That being said, I am believing for God's financial provision regarding this new step of faith. I trust Him to show me how to be wise with my finances and look forward to seeing how He will meet all of my needs, because I know He will. The scriptures I believe God is giving me for this is "Everything is possible for one who believes" Mark 9:23 and "I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief." Mark 9:24
If you have a need, not just financial, remember that Elevating God is key to receiving your miracles!
*I will update when I get to Bethel regarding how the Lord provides everything I need!