I've been ignoring the blog lately, but it's only temporary, I promise! I wrote a few months ago about my friends/landlords wanting to sell their house, and while they've decided against it, I'm still making plans to move out and begin the foster care licensing process some time soon. Moves cost money, though, so God and I made a deal... whenever He provides the $___ I need, I'll know it's time to take that step. It might take six months, or it could take two years. I'm being diligent about saving, but completely open to His timing.
That being said, when my church approached me last month about stepping into an interim position to help the transition between children's ministers go more smoothly, I jumped at the chance. Not for a split second did I consider the time I'd need to invest or the weight of the additional responsibility; my only thought was moving money!!! It seemed like such an answer to prayer that I never thought to ask for confirmation.
While having a second job obviously puts me a little closer to my goal of moving out, it also takes away from my writing time, and I've wrestled with guilt over that decision. Now, for all I know, God may have planned this season so that I could let my projects simmer and return to them with new eyes and a fresh perspective, but I'll never know because I was too set on doing what "made sense."
This is where it's easy to get tripped up and fall into the enemy's trap. We pray for provision, and then when opportunities present themselves, we busy ourselves in the name of "God's plan." But at what cost? How much of what we do to earn money is in line with what He truly wants for us? What do we sacrifice in order to chase that paycheck and the dream it fulfills?
The extra hours I've put in haven't bothered me in a physical, practical sense; I still have the time necessary to stay on top of my responsibilities, and I truly enjoy what I do. But spiritually, I've found that I'm walking a fine line. One side has me relying on God's time, the other, taking things into my own hands. One side leads to the love of money itself, the other, recognizing the love of the Provider. It's a battle between seizing an opportunity and potentially ignoring my calling, willingness to work hard and taking time for holy rest.
Maybe you're not saving for a down payment, but I'd be willing to bet that everyone has a God-given dream that hinges on a bank account balance. Maybe it's upgrading to a more reliable car. Maybe it's quitting your job to stay home with your kids. Maybe it's traveling or getting out of debt or starting a non-profit ministry. Or maybe you just want to make it to the end of the month without worrying about how you're going to get food on the table. Whatever your financial dreams, I absolutely encourage you to ask for provision. But when the opportunities come, don't forget to weigh the costs, pray about your decision, and trust Him regardless of what He says. Unnecessary busyness is never a part of God's plan for us, and no goal is worth giving up those things that are most important to us.