I was young and now I am old, yet I have never seen the righteous forsaken or their children begging bread. (Psalm 37:25, NIV).

My checkbook had racing stripes on it. The smell of burning tires seemed to fill the air as the funds kept racing out of my account.

I was unemployed and wondered how I was going to meet all the financial demands and monthly bills. It’s interesting how the bills don’t take a hiatus when the income stream dries up! Even the pantry and refrigerator were shivering in their bareness.

As a career banker, numbers are logical and money is a reliable commodity.  However, as a missionary kid, I also understood that, behind the scenes, God sovereignly works in all things. Or at least I thought I understood. But understanding in theory is quite different from facing the reality.

As a high-school junior in 1980, I recall catching a quick glimpse of my parents’ tax return for that specific year. At the time, Adjusted Gross Income didn’t mean much to me; however, the amount of approximately $24,000 didn’t quite seem like enough. Especially to raise five children! But I never heard my father complain about their missionary support level – we always seemed to have what we needed. Although, I do recall him faithfully and frequently claiming today’s verse and others like it.

When faced with my own financial dilemma, it was my turn to exercise my faith in God. Did I truly believe He would “meet my needs” (Philippians 4:19)? Really? If so, then why the fearful doubt and anxiety about utilities being cut off, plummeting credit scores, and collectors calling? After all, with God running the affairs of the world, why should He care about my electric bill?

As I prayed, read God’s Word, and stretched my faith, a spiritual truth sprang afresh to my mind. God is more concerned with my heart than my situation. He wants to fill my relational need for Him rather than just meet my immediate monetary need. I needed to lift my eyes from the frantic financial picture and firmly gaze on the shimmering dawn of my intimate reliance on God.

It may be just an interesting coincidence, but shortly after my “providential encounter,” I received a job offer seemingly customized for my specific skill set. God has not forsaken me – or my well-worn checkbook.

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