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Nov 14 2010

Running With My Bucket

Posted by Mugs @ 7:56 pm in Devotional

By Mugs Manry

“Look at the birds of the air, they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?”

Matthew 6:26 (NIV)

My husband and I have matching chairs in front of our pellet stove, and we love to sit down in them together to read. He has his cup of coffee; I have my cup of tea; and there are usually piles of papers, books, and magazines. This would seem an idyllic scene, yet there is one item that detracts from it. Between our chairs sits a narrow, rectangular side table which is not quite up to the task at hand.

On this table, we gingerly set down our cups and our stacks of reading materials. The pile becomes extremely haphazard, and inevitably, something falls off. Therefore, rather than reading, I usually sit worrying over an imminent spill. Often, we are forced to give up on our stack, put cups away, and start tossing things on the floor.

Over a year ago I told my husband of my “someday” dream. “Someday, when we have money saved up, it would be great to buy a nice, round table to place between our chairs,” I said. Within every family budget there are “someday” items, and this was where I assumed the round table would continue to reside.

Last month, I was nearing the end of a run with my dog when I came upon a house a half block away. A round, mahogany table sat at the end of the driveway. In front of it was a hand lettered sign proclaiming “FREE.” My first response was shock, followed quickly by praise. “That’s exactly the table I wanted! Thank You Lord!”

I picked up the table in my arms and, with the dog leading the way, did some unexpected strength training exercises for the remaining quarter mile. I arrived at the front door and called out to my husband for help. He came out with a surprised look on his face and declared “That’s exactly the table you wanted!”

As I continued to praise God for the table for which I had not even asked, He reminded me of three other things for which I had been praying. I had been fretting and worrying over them in my prayers for several months. With clarity I knew He was asking me to have faith in a Father who gives good gifts. I changed my prayers from ones filled with fret and worry to ones filled with faith and belief.

Admittedly, I ‘toil and spin’ for many things. I work and save and plan, and those are good things to do according to the scripture. The Word of God teaches us to work hard, to owe no one, and to be prudent, not wasteful. Yet, sometimes we have things so planned out and budgeted that we leave no room for the unexpected gift.

My brother recently said to me, “When I attain something that I have worked and saved for, it brings me contentment. When I am unexpectedly blessed by God, I experience joy.” Leave room for God’s unexpected gifts. He knows what you need. Continue to pray and ask Him for His blessings, and then eagerly await His provision.

I grew up in a small church in Minnesota where life was a daily struggle. My pastor’s mother, Grandma Andrews, was greatly loved by all who knew her. Her life was never easy, but she used to tell my Mom, “If I had known God better, I would have come running with my bucket, instead of crawling with my cup.”

Dear Lord, thank you for the unexpected gifts you give to me. Keep my heart grateful for your provision. You provide for me just as you provide for the birds and the flowers. Let no doubt of your provision and your goodness take root in me. I will, expectantly wait on You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Application Steps:

Pray and ask in faith for the Father’s provision. Reject your mind’s attempt to fret over the situation. When worry rises up, counter it with truth from God’s Word. Look for the unexpected blessing and praise God when it arrives.

Reflections:

Do you awake each day full of worry or faith?

Are you thankful when God gives you a good gift?

Do you believe blessing does not apply to you?

Power Verses:

Matthew 7:11 (NIV) “If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him.”

Ephesians 3:20-21 (NIV) “Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.”

One Response to “Running With My Bucket”

  1. Mary says:

    Amen!

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