I called my husband as I was leaving work one brisk spring day. I was not sure how this conversation was going to go. I felt my heart pressed with a word from the Lord. I told my husband, “I think I want to stay home after the baby arrives. Like, be a stay-at-home-mom”. I could barely believe my own words as they fluttered out of my mouth.
Of course, I knew what my husband was going to say, “No”.
This “no” was wrapped in concern for our finances and concern for me. He rattled off all the reasons why it did not seem like a good idea. I rebutted with all the reasons the Lord gave me when I rattled off the same reasons to Him.
My mind and my heart were trying hard to convince one another of the rightness of each other’s stances. I did what any wife does when they are pregnant and there is life-changing news being whispered from Heaven, I cried. Our conversation ended, but our prayers started.
The thread from that conversation to my last day in vocational ministry to my first day back to vocational ministry was woven with delicate, precise hands. Hands that knew when to stitch closer, stitch longer, to pull taut, to strengthen and reinforce–Hands of a Master Craftsman.
Our family weaved in and out of uncertainty.
We KNEW God called me to stay home.
We KNEW the promise He gave us when we obeyed trustfully.
We KNEW our Father was faithful to fulfill His promises.
Even still, our own comprehension of the why, how, when, where, who left us bewildered. This change in our family dynamic thrust us into a place where trust was our only option. Trust was the only way we would survive that season.
The Bible is chock-full of stories of God’s people put in positions where trust is their only answer. For example, in the book of Exodus, trust is what the Israelites needed to survive the wilderness.
They had just walked through parted waters, with not a drop on them (unless it was their own sweat).
They had just watched the Egyptians be washed over with waves as the sea swallowed them. The Israelites sang praises the Lord! He has just saved them once more! Hallelujah! Alas, here we find them grumbling about the grub.
Two chapters after we see this miraculous and majestic redemption, the Israelites feel their needs are not being satisfied, so they share their grief with Moses.
After all, even as slaves in Egypt, they ate like kings. “We sat around pots of meat and ate all the food we wanted, but you have brought us out into this desert to starve this entire assembly to death” (Exodus 16:3, NIV).
Oh heavens! Moses, their fearless and long-suffering leader, sent their cries to Heaven.
The Lord, in all His generous glory, said, “I have heard the grumbling of the Israelites. Tell them, ‘At twilight, you will eat meat, and in the morning you will be filled with bread. Then you will know that I am the Lord your God'” (v. 12).
Then you will know. The next morning when they awoke, there it was, manna from heaven. The Lord did what He said He would do. He proved to them that nothing is impossible, or too great, or out of reach for the Almighty God.
Here is the beautiful part: “The Israelites ate manna forty years until they came to a land that was settled” (v. 35).
Every day for forty years the Lord sent manna from heaven. The Israelites trusted and relied on the provisions of God. He provided! Continually! Faithfully! With no contingencies (even when a few Israelites disobeyed the given commands).
Through all of this, God showed the Israelites that He is their Ultimate Provider.
Jehovah-Jireh. The Lord Will Provide. Just as God provided for the Israelites, He provided for Abraham as he was about to sacrifice his son, Isaac, but there in the thicket was a ram to take Isaac’s place.
He provided for us when He sent the living bread, Jesus Christ, to serve as a sacrifice for our sins, so we could take our rightful place in Heaven. The Lord met the needs of the Israelites. It may not have been what they expected, or how, or why, but, nevertheless, He provided.
The Lord met the needs of our family. In the midst of our uncertainty, we white-knuckled the Lord’s promises. He provided for us in the most miraculous, intimate, and faithful ways. The Lord unveiled the purest form of trust to our hearts.
There were moments when He revived our hearts with His strength and tightened our grip when we were slipping.
We survived by the trust.
We survived on the Living Bread.