Gaining Direction Through a Lack of Provision

This is an excerpt from Today God Is First, Volume 2, by Os Hillman:

“You will drink from the brook, and I have ordered the ravens to feed you there” (1 Kings 17:4).

The prophet Elijah pronounced a drought upon the land because of the sin of Ahab and the nation of Israel. There was only one problem. Elijah had to live in the same land as Ahab.

“Now Elijah the Tishbite, from Tishbe in Gilead, said to Ahab, ‘As the LORD, the God of Israel, lives, whom I serve, there will be neither dew nor rain in the next few years except at my word.’ Then the word of the LORD came to Elijah: ‘Leave here, turn eastward and hide in the Kerith Ravine, east of the Jordan. You will drink from the brook, and I have ordered the ravens to feed you there’” (1 Kings 17:1-4).

God provided for Elijah in a supernatural way. The ravens brought bread in the morning and meat in the evening. His water came from the brook.

God often uses money to confirm direction for our lives. Many times God uses a lack of provision to move us into new directions. It is a catalyst to encourage new ideas and strategies. Many times a loss of job becomes the greatest blessing to our lives because it provides the catalyst to do things we simply would never do without taking the step to get out of our comfort zone.

Friend, if you are fully following the Lord in your life and seeking direction from Him and you have no un-confessed sin in your life, there is no way He will allow you to miss His provision for you. He has a thousand ways to get the provision you need at the time you need it. Provision follows obedience.

(H/t You Decide)

As an expatriate who has been through some incredibly faith-stretching times with his family, this is perhaps the most important personal message that I can impart to American people today.

The last time we lived in the US, it was in the middle of a recession and we teetered on the edge between just getting by and being homeless, even though I was working at three jobs. There simply was not enough money.

Then God led us back to Japan. For a long while we did OK financially, but then, because of a matter of principle, I lost my job. Since our apartment was tied to the job, we lost that as well. Then it turned out that I had to file for a new visa before I could work again. For three months, we were broke, scared, homeless, with no income, and in Japan far away from any resources. However, we never went a day without a roof over our heads, and we always ate. The shortest and best answer as to how this occurred was that God sent ravens to feed us.

We survived and flourished, because God led us to a new place. Things went well in Japan until my son was diagnosed with cancer. We did not have any insurance that was valid in the US, we had no savings, and my business was destroyed because we were too busy looking after my son. On top of that, the doctors in Japan gave no hope for his recovery. God saw us through this time. Despite everything, we were able to return to the US, where my son went through two operations–the first for over six hours, and the next for over thirteen hours–and he was saved.

When we returned to Japan, because I had no income, we lost our visas and were given less than a month to leave. We were completely broke, and had no funds to cover airfare to anywhere. Then we got our frequent flier miles back from United Airlines. While it was not enough to get us back to the States, it was enough to fly to our present place of residence elsewhere in Asia.

We arrived here with a little less than $1000 in our pockets, and only the clothes on our backs. We had three kids, and my wife was pregnant at the time. We were on 30-day tourist visas and had no idea if I could find a  job or if I would have enough income until I could get a paycheck. Somehow, my wife lost her address book even though she certainly packed it. As soon as we arrived, I checked my e-mail on Yahoo, only to find that someone had hacked into it and had erased my entire Yahoo address book and all of my saved e-mails.

So here we were, in a foreign country where we did not understand the language, with no friends, no real prospects, on limited funds, and with no way to contact anyone we knew to ask for prayer or help.

Not only did we live through this, but we thrived. Though there have been some sacrifices, from a financial standpoint coming here was the best thing I have ever done.

In difficult financial times, there is only one certainty in life: God will provide for you if you seek him. However, this provision often comes with strings: You may have to leave and go somewhere else, or do something else besides what you have been doing.

This in turn may require of you the utmost trust and faith in him. But sometimes, you have no choice–you have to move or you will die.

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7 Responses to Gaining Direction Through a Lack of Provision

  1. loopyloo305 says:

    Thank you for the links, John, both “The Christian Gazette” and loopyloo305!

  2. Pingback: Gaining Direction Through a Lack of Provision (via The Tree of Mamre) | The Christian Gazette

  3. Your story beats mine by an order of magnitude. Yet, there are many similarities.
    Stay well wherever you are!

  4. Pingback: Give Me Your Last Meal | YOU DECIDE

  5. Pingback: The Rosy-Fingered Dawn 080411 « Mennonite Preacher

  6. Pingback: Resources for 1 Kings 17:1 - 4

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