Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Giving up the Glory

Over the past few weeks and months, it has been truly amazing to see how many people's lives and budgets have been changed with these tiny little pieces of paper called coupons. Sometimes it's really easy to start slipping into the trap of patting myself on the back and thinking I had something to do with that. I thought it needed to be said that Rita Wiggs has NOTHING to do with this. Robbie and I have been so blessed over the course of the last few months. God has truly opened up heaven and poured out His blessings on us. I wanted to tell you all a little bit about this. Some of you already know about this, but for the others, I hope it is an encouragement. Robbie works a job that is purely commision based and any of you who have had this type of job knows that you are TRULY at the mercy of the economy (and your awesome, terrific, wonderful, should I go on? boss-THANKS Jason). Back around Christmas time, Robbie was doing really well and he continued to do really well through the first few months of the year. All was good. In March, I went to a ladies ministry event at my church. Donna Sherer was the speaker and she was talking about saving money on your food budget. She talked about the fact that NONE of us know from one day to the next whether or not our "secure" jobs will be there tomorrow or not and that we should prepare for when that happens by being a good steward with what God has given us. She touched on using coupons to save money and quite honestly, it sounded like a fun little game to me. As I said, we were doing pretty good and were wasting TONS AND TONS of money going out to eat TOO MANY times a week plus we were spending at least $100 - $150 every single time we went to the grocery store. I was still shopping at Walmart and priding myself on the fact that I was shopping at the "cheap" store. When I did occasionally go to Bi-lo I would try to shop the sales as much as I could and thought I was doing really good. Anyway, after I listened to Donna, I thought, HMMM-this could be fun! I think I'd like to try my hand at this. It honestly was a GAME for me.. That's it. Something fun to do and I thought it would be neat to see how much I could leave the store with and how little I could pay for it. I jumped right in, feet first and got started. This was the second week in March. I ordered my newspaper and started clipping coupons, I found the southern savers web site and started spending WAY too much time on there (LOL), and started to get in the groove. My cabinets got fuller and fuller and my bathroom was OVERFLOWING with toothpaste. Then it happened... God got tired of all the I's and Me's and the economy finally hit us HARD. Robbie's sales did a DRASTIC drop at the beginning of April. Our rent is due on the first of the month and as of the last day of April, we had absolutely no idea how we were going to pay it... Then GOD stepped in and said,
"Time for YOU to move out and for ME to step in! ".... On the last day of the month, Robbie started calling me about every hour to give me updates.. They all went something like this... "You just won't believe this, I just sold a $____ part that has been listed for 6 months"... An hour later..."You won't believe this, we just sold another $___ part!" You get the picture.. By the end of the day on the last day of April, we had enough money to pay our rent.

Some would say this was a fluke and that it was just a coincidence.. I say otherwise. Over the course of that first month, GOD had filled my pantry with food, my bathroom with toothpaste and razors, and had paid our rent on time! And if you are one of the ones who think it was a fluke, maybe this will change your mind... HE has done it again in May, June, and July!!! Every single month on the last day of the month, we have NOT had our rent, and every single month on the last day of the month, Robbie's sales go through the roof and we have been able to pay our rent on time. We STILL have a pantry full of food and a bathroom full of toothpaste and God is STILL on the throne.

Our spending per month has went from about $1100 (just on restaurants and grocery items ALONE) down to about $400 per month if that. We have had people ask us what we've been doing with all the "extra" money that we have been saving with coupons and if truth be told, there has been no extra money. I'm OK with that (it's called contentment) because my needs have been met along with a want every now and then and I have the BEST family on the face of the Earth! I am blessed beyond measure!

I didn't know why I had gone to the event at my church that night. I didn't know why I started couponing "for fun" when I did. BUT I KNOW WHY NOW!

I don't know why God told me to tell you all of this but He did and I am. For some it could be just to show you that even though you think your job is invincible and your income in guaranteed-it's NOT!!!!! I can point to MANY friends of ours right this very minute that would tell you that with absolute certainty. Your job is a gift from God, not a right given to you through yourself. He can take that away just as fast as He gave it and he WILL if you are not careful to give HIM the glory and not yourself.

For some of you it may be a lesson in contentment. Do we have everything we had before? Do we go out and buy everything we THINK we need? Do we get to eat out everytime I don't "feel" like cooking? NO... NO... and again I say NO! Are we OK with that?? YES! We know that God has supplied and IS supplying all that we need and if we don't have it, then we must not need it as bad as we think we do. God gives and He takes away. Our job is to deal with it, and not just endure it, but to deal with it-with the RIGHT attitude. Wouldn't I like to be able to go out and eat every day and not have to cook?? YOU BET I WOULD! But God doesn't want me to do that. He has called me to be a good steward of HIS money and that means sometimes it's not going to be "convienient", but I still have to do that because it's what I am commanded to do. Contentment-- even in the rough times, when I don't "feel" like it.

I don't know why God told me to write this and I don't know who it was intended for, but I'm trusting in HIM to get it to the person it's supposed to go to. If you are that person then I guess once again-He has accomplished His will.

To GOD be ALL the Glory!!!!

Blessed Beyond Measure,


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