Trusting God With Pennies

Copy of blog post-3

In the summer of 2010, Josh and I packed up our home and our one year old and moved to Florida, where Josh had just been hired as the worship leader for a new church. The position was only part-time, so before taking the job we prayed, and waited, knowing we could not live on his salary alone. The company he had been working for here in Iowa offered him a position working from home remotely in Florida. We saw this as a green light, and hit the road.

Shortly after moving in, Josh and I had the following conversation;

“Courtney, what’s going on? Did you pay the bill”

“Not yet”

“Why?”

“Well, because there is no money.”

The bill he was referring to, was our electric bill. Our electricity had just been shut off. This is why.

Six weeks after moving to Florida, Josh was still waiting for the equipment to come from IA to start his remote position. There were hang-ups, procedures to be written, and red tape to remove. Six weeks later the money we had saved to move had long been spent on deposits, connection fees, groceries, bills, and all the things that money finds itself being spent on.

There we were, all unpacked and settled in our beautiful paradise condo and our account was stone cold dry. Our one credit card was maxed from immature spending and with each passing day we became a day later on our bills.

I started to prioritize the important bills to the can wait a few days bills.

Because we had just moved from Iowa. And in our previous hometown you could wait a few days before paying your electric bill.  They would float you a grace period before blacking you out. Good ole’ Midwest.

Yeah not the same in Florida.

So when the electric bill was put in the can wait a few days pile- you know wait until pay day which was that Friday- apparently it couldn’t wait.

Florida doesn’t mess around with paying your bills. Hard core.

There was some money in our checking account. Some. As in just a little more than the actual bill and of course the $50 reconnect fee. We knew as soon as we paid it- for a solid week we would have pennies. Pennies for diapers. Pennies for groceries. Pennies for gas. This is why I was waiting to pay the bill- I didn’t want pennies for a week. A week isn’t that long though-

Unless you are broke.

Then a week is an eternity.

We talked about it. Prayed. Paid the bill.

After paying our bill, moving money from our deflated savings (as in $36) – we were able to scrounge together roughly $40 to live on.

There was a family vacationing at our condo, which had a pool. Most places in FL do. So we decided to join them while waiting for the electricity to be reconnected.

While we were making small talk I felt the urge to buy this family pizza. (Holy Spirit ya’ll!) The urge to buy pizza. Can you see how this would be conflicting to the chick whose power had just been shut off and had cashed in her quarters at the bank for gas? Yeah.

I swam over to Josh. Explained I was pretty sure we were buying pizza with our last $40.

He just said ‘ok-I trust you.’

I didn’t trust me though. Or the urge. Or Jesus. Or God. Or the move. Or the money. Or the reason.

I got out of the pool anyway, walked across the street to Pizza Hut and bought $40 worth of pizza.

Broke.

The family was appreciative, we chatted a little longer and that was it.

It was a Wednesday. We went to church that night. At the end of the service a friend of ours handed us a white envelope.

“Someone told me to give you this” she says.

“Who?”

“Just someone”-then she smiled and walked away.

Just like that, there was money. Not a ton of money, but a necessary amount.

Just someone had given us $80. Just someone had doubled what we spent on the pizza. Just someone gave us what we needed until Friday. Just someone.

Josh and I still don’t know who the white envelope was from.

Josh and I do know that God is the best thing that has ever happened to our broke-messed up-selfish-money ignorant spending-selves. And we know that God works through just someone’s every day to remind us that HE IS GOOD, AND THAT HE CAN BE TRUSTED.

This is one of the few times in my life I have trusted God freely. It made no sense to spend the remaining money on the pizza. The family gave us no reason to think they were in need, and though they were appreciative of the gesture, nothing more came from the afternoon at the pool. I know, however, that it wasn’t about WHO we were blessing, but WHY.

We bought the pizza because the Holy Spirit told us to. We bought the pizza because it was another opportunity that God showed up and showed out in our life. The pizza was another reminder, to us, that HE was for us.

What about you friend? Was there a time you trusted God when it seemed like the last thing you wanted to do? How did He show himself faithful?

I think about that afternoon all the time. When things get scary, or my footing slips, or when the odds are stacking up, or when my marriage is unraveling, or when the numbers are in the red, or when the kids are going crazy, I think about buying that pizza. And then, I remember, I can trust God. I just need to let go and let Him.

 

Trusting God is KEY ONE of our 9 Keys to Contentment class. Want more? Join us! Thursday nights starting this week, 6:30-8:30pm. We will dive into a study on Philipians and look for mindsets that help us thrive no matter the circumstances. Check it out here.