Have you ever had a “God encounter?”
It is one of those moments when something miraculous happens and you know there is no other explanation except it was God working in your life. I remember a day, 25 years ago, when God provided a miracle for my family and showed us His faithfulness.
My wife, Crystal, and I had been married only a few months. We were living in Farmville, Virginia with no family nearby.
I was working part-time at McDonald’s making $4.75 an hour and my wife was two months pregnant. We were living on what little food I could bring home from the restaurant because our food stamps were all gone. The rent on our two-bedroom trailer was due and we didn’t have it. To say “times were tough” would be an understatement!
I remember that day very clearly. She was carrying my child in her womb and yet we were about to lose the roof over our heads.
I felt like a little boy who had fallen down a flight of stairs—I wanted to reach the top but I was too weak from the fall. I needed help. I knew the landlord would be stopping by that evening to collect the rent.
I had done everything I could think to provide for my family and it still wasn’t enough.
So we began to pray for a miracle. We stood on the biblical promise in Philippians 4:19: “My God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.”
I slowly walked to the mailbox on the curb, desperately praying for a miracle.
I retrieved the mail and went back inside the trailer. As I was fumbling through the junk mail, a small envelope caught my eye.
It was from an acquaintance of ours who lived four hours away. We were amazed to receive her letter because it had been close to three years since the last time we’d talked with her.
In the letter, she said that God had given her a dream a couple of weeks earlier about my wife and I needing help.
She began to pray for us and God told her to send us a check.
She starting to write the check but then realized she couldn’t send it to us because we had moved away and she didn’t have our address.
So, after contacting my parents to get our new address, she placed the letter and the check in the mail. It arrived the very day our rent was due and it was exactly the amount needed for the rent!
She had no idea what we needed or when we needed it. She just heard from God and obeyed. That was a “God-encounter!”
God taught me some good lessons on faith through this situation. First, worrying about the problem won’t solve it. Even though I did more than my share of worrying, it didn’t change the situation one bit, it just gave me heartburn.
Second, God showed me that He knows where I am at all times and He cares about what concerns me. So, instead of worrying, I just needed to trust Him. In the words of the old church hymn: “Tis so sweet to trust in Jesus… O for grace to trust Him more.”
King David understood that he could trust in God’s provision.
He wrote in Psalm 37:25, “I have been young, and now am old; yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his children begging bread.”
No matter what obstacle or problem you are facing, God knows where you’re at and what you need. When you’ve done all you can do, keep your faith in Him.
He’s promised to supply your needs if you will just trust in Him.
And you, too, can have a “God-encounter!”
Rev. Doug Johnson is the senior pastor at Raven Assembly of God in Raven, Virginia.