Even in little things and unexpected ways, God provides.
Mitch and I have found it easy to trust God with our family size. We are trying to learn to trust Him with our finances. Since I spend most of the money (or at least more regularly spend) around here, for me that has begun to look like this: running everything I buy through a filter of questioning if that's what God wants me to spend money on.
To be honest, this is very difficult. I have found that I have a few wants and desires that are hard to say no to. Here is one recently that I had to say no to. I really, really, really wanted a new diaper changing pad. I bought this one for around $20 only a year ago at a second-hand store, but I'm pretty sure it was new (it was packaged). It ripped the day I brought it home. I was devastated. It didn't take too long for it to need significant repair:
Do you know how embarrassing that is as a daycare provider?? Our changing area is required to be sanitized with a bleach water combo after EVERY diaper change (yuck, yuck, yuck)...but it's kinda impossible to sanitize one of these ripped pads. It was embarrassing for parents to see that diaper area, too.
What I really wanted was one of these:
This fancy-shmancy changer costs a whopping $60. But I had a $50 gift certificate designated "for baby." This counts right? I even got pre-purchase approval from my husband (after relentless nagging). But I never did feel a peace about it--and believe me, I had prayed much!
Yesterday I was changing a baby and I felt God speak clear as a bell. I have all this wonderful fabric here. PUL is a poly-urethane laminate. It's durable enough for diapers, it should work for a changing table. My concern had been that the bleach would break it down. It might. But the little sleeve I made, with the waterproof side out, cost less than $7. I could make a few more to replace it if needed before getting up to the $60. But I didn't have that clarity of thought until yesterday when I felt God's direction. He is faithful to provide the things we need and to help us make decisions as well.
It looks so nice now and works wonderfully. I know it doesn't match the color of the closet walls, but it DOES match the rest of the room.
This isn't just a matter of learning not to be impulsive with our spending. It's also not as simple as just asking God to provide what we need. After all, had He not provided the gift certificate? Yes, He had, but just because it is in our hands does not mean it is ours to spend on what WE see fit. But through prayer it was obvious that God has a different plan for the money in our pocket. Trusting. Listening. Obeying. It can be SO hard!