“Instead of placing our faith in Him, we panic and try to solve the situation ourselves” (quote from reblogged post below). Oh, how often do we do that? We need to catch ourselves in the very act of trying to fix the situation on our own and reach out, immediately, to ask God for His help.
Here’s an example from my own life from just this past week. For a while now I’ve known that I needed to buy a new set of tires for my 7 1/2 year old car (I bought it in Dec. 2004). The tires were the original tires (yeah, I know . . .). But I’ve been unemployed for over three years now with no income and very limited financial resources, so I kept putting it off. Well, I drove to my favorite bookstore to browse and about 20 minutes later when I left, I got in my car and drove away only to discover there was something drastically wrong with my car. It pulled to the right, made awful sounds, and my first thought was “oh no, it’s the transmission,” but once that panicked thought passed, I realized it was probably a flat tire. However, I was headed out a very narrow exit onto a street and there was no place for me to pull over right there. So I turned left on the street and a convenience store was located just a few yards down the road, so I pulling into parking area.
As I got out of my car and looked at the right front tire, it was definitely flat. My first thought was, “Okay, you don’t know anyone to call, so now what are you doing to do?” So I said within myself (not audibly), “Okay, Lord, I need some help.” I talked with the cashier inside the convenience store and he offered to get on the internet (I assume to look for a towing company) but the internet was not accessible to him (company policy). At that point it came to my mind to call a new maintenance man who is in charge of maintenance at the apartment where I live, so I did and he said he would come and take a look but it would take a few minutes for him to get to where I was. As I ended the call, I walked out of the store and stood by my car to wait.
A bunch of folks came and went while I was waiting and then this guy around my age in a pickup parked in the spot on the right side next to my car. As he got out of his pickup he looked at my flat tire and said, “Looks like you could use some help.” I smiled at him and said, “Yes,” but that I thought there might be someone coming soon to help me. He said he’d be happy to help, and I found myself not sure of what to do since I had already called someone who wasn’t there yet. He looked at me, smiled, and said, “Last chance.” And I said, “I’ll take it.” Well, he got the flat off and put on that “pretend” spare tire we all have in our trunks, and helped me put air in it (no, I hadn’t checked the air in the peewee tire for a few years so it was very low). Fortunately, there was an air hose right there at the convenience store.
I offered to buy him a drink for his help and he said no, he didn’t need one because he had one of those pint-sized drinks already. So as he left I told him how much I appreciated his help, and that he was an angel sent to me in disguise. He laughed and said, “I’ll have to tell my friends that I did a good deed today as they won’t believe it.” I laughed and said, “Yes, you certainly did, and you tell them that, too.” His name is Mel–an angel named Mel. As for the maintenance man, he arrived right at the time Mel was finishing up with my tire. I apologized to him and said Mel was a complete surprise. He said it was no problem and left to go back to work.
The moral to this story is this: At the very moment I knew there was something really wrong with my car and while it alarmed me as I didn’t want to ruin my car by driving it any farther, I didn’t panic, even though at that moment I knew no one in town to call. I asked the Lord to help me as I didn’t know what to do. Now that may seem like a very small thing to you, but it wasn’t to me (I’ve learned to depend on God a LOT in these past three plus years when I’ve found myself in a tight spot). I could have panicked and tried to figure it all out on my own (you don’t even want to know my immediate first thought after it happened which would have completely ruined the rim that held my tire in place). No, I didn’t let the anxiety take control. I asked God for His help, and He sent it by way of Mel.
So often when we think we need more faith, it has nothing to do with getting “more faith” but everything to do with exercising the faith God has already given to us when a crisis happens. By allowing Him to intervene (and His answers are always better than ours), that is how we “grow” our faith. Once again, I learned a valuable lesson that if we just give God whatever it is that we are anxious or panicked about, and leave it with Him, He’ll provide the best answer in His time (and sometimes, like with my flat tire, His timing was immediate), and by watching Him work, our faith grows.
And, you’ll be happy to know I now have a brand new set of tires on my car, and my car is pretty happy about that, too. 😉 ~Sara’s Musings @ WordPress.com