This past October our family sensed God leading us to return to a place we had been 11 months earlier on a short-term mission trip. We’d passed up a couple other chances to return, but the time was right. The only way it would work was if God provided the money – as usual. In this post we discuss how we can build the faith of our children by watching God provide for our needs.
We sensed God telling us something else. In addition to saying, “Yes, Go!” we also knew He was saying, “Don’t ask people for money. You raise half, I’ll bring you the other half.” Wait…what?! Even the half “we” would raise would really be provided by God too!
I knew He would come through, but I wasn’t sure how or when, but I knew He wanted us to visually demonstrate His provision. I drew two large thermometers on poster paper and put them up where everyone in our family could see them. We added due dates, dollar goals, and then sat the kids down to talk through the charts.
One chart was for things we could see – the few dollars we could carve out of our budget. The other was for things we could not see – money that would have to arrive by God’s mighty hand.
I interview teaching candidates frequently who feel called into Christian education. A few have even felt led to our specific school. They’re competent, eager, and passionate. I don’t doubt their sincerity. But for some, the salary reduction is sobering. They turn down the job because they just don’t see how they’ll make ends meet.
Others jump in with both feet, and God provides in ways they could not ask or imagine. This is precisely why I wanted to capture God’s provision in a visually obvious manner for my kids – and me and my spouse – to see. We all need to be reminded that if God calls us to something, He will provide. My wife and I shared the budget with them to reinforce the point: we wouldn’t come up with the money on our own. Budget-wise, this was impossible.
Build the faith of your children
Our children wondered, “Dad, what if we don’t get the money? How will God use people if they don’t know we’re going?” Because we had experienced this before, my wife and I told them, “Don’t worry, He will provide. We will wait, watch, and mark it down.”
In less than four months God provided more than enough from what we could see and even more from what we couldn’t see! We have the charts on our wall to prove it!
I want my kids to know: What God calls for He provides for. I want them not to say “No” to things God’s asking them to do just because of fear. Moses received the words; Noah received the animals; the Israelites received the manna; and the woman received endless oil from her two jars. What God calls for, He provides for – whether we can see how it may play out or not.
Perhaps this hits home for you if you’re a father? You may feel inadequate as a father, like you have major shortcomings in raising sons and daughters, or you may wonder how to be a better leader for your family.
Don’t worry, God has called you to this! And what God calls for, He provides for.