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Friday, April 27, 2007

Our Gift Giver

I want to tell you the story how how it was that Dustin and I made it down the isle and are actually married today. It's seems like a weird topic but trust me is has a purpose.

I was just turning 20 as our wedding neared. Dustin was 23. We were broke! Can I say FLAT BROKE! We knew the Lord was calling us to marry and we knew that some people would think it a bad decision. We were young, and to be honest we had NOT previously been very responsible. We really could not afford a fancy or dream wedding, but we both thought ( and I more accurately insisted) that we ought to have a decent wedding (i.e in a church and with a reception hall, a nice dress and some kind of catered food. I wasn't asking for the moon here.) so as to assure our families that this would indeed be a legitimate marriage and that just because we were young and had made some mistakes we truly were seeking the Lord and heading in a direction we knew He was pointing us.

Right before it came time to book the reception hall and place a down payment to reserve our date Dustin had all of his tools stolen from the back of his truck. This was the hugest financial blow to us! He needed tools for his livelihood and we had no choice but to pay every penny of our wedding cash towards the replacement of his tools. I was crushed. He was in a panic trying to figure out a way to earn enough money to give me this appropriate wedding I was so desperate for.

We had faith that the Lord was in control and that even if we had to have a back yard wedding with dixie cups and (goodness grief) a pot luck, or something of the sort, that it didn't matter. We loved each other and that was all that mattered.

But you know God is so good! You know God is so gracious. He cares about our hearts! He wants the best for us.

We never saw it coming when we were given a Bank One money envelope from an anonymous giver/s full of cash. Cash we desperately needed for our wedding. Let's be clear this was NOT from a family member of ours. The best we could figure was that someone in a small group of people we had prayed with ONCE must have felt led to give to us. Someone we didn't know!

We were speechless. I mean utterly humbled because to us there was nothing more important at that moment in our lives and nothing more treasured than that gift. We were amazed that someone out there (an anonymous someone at that) cared for us enough to give their own hard earned money for our personal enjoyment. What!? Who does that? Worse we couldn't even thank them profusely! It was if they, in their anonymity, chose to say, this is really from the Lord. (I have chills just remembering it!)

Needless to say we have NEVER forgotten that moment! In fact the true gift we received from our beloved gift giver/s (?) was the lesson in sacrificial giving. Their gift truly was an eternal one. The quintessential gift that keeps on giving! I shudder to think what kind of giver I would be if I hadn't been on the humbling receiving end of their generosity. Praise God, He is a good teacher!

I started out this post with the section of writing that begins in the purple. I decided to put this story first because in the end it's always about Someone else's sacrifice, which came first. In the case of the funds for our wedding it was the anonymous giver/s (?) who by their simple act of obedience have laid a foundation for us and set a standard for giving that we have never been able to ignore.

I want to tell you that the original Giver is Christ Himself. He is the foundation for our giving and is the ultimate Teacher! His act of obedience is SO profound! We will spend eternity experiencing the profoundness of it. Let's not wait until then, though. Let's begin to live by His example. Let us, by our own acts of obedience, pass on the Gift to those who have not yet come to believe.

Yep! Pastor Greg isn't a liar! Tonight was a so much fun! I just had my socks blessed off!

God called. I believe that as far as it goes for me and Dustin we have said "Here I am Lord."

As I look back over the history of our walk with Christ through the years of our marriage I am amazed at how far the Lord has taken us! I am so thankful for His redeeming power and His transforming Holy Spirit at work in us. (Read that sentence again. Those are not idle words I just wrote.) He has saved us! I mean truly and utterly saved us!!!!!!!

I am overjoyed that we are able to give. To give freely and with full confidence in the Lord. With confidence that we have been blessed to be a blessing to others. We wait in confident expectation on our Lord! I began this blog with my very first entry entitled Believing God for BIG things. I am so glad that we cannot ever get to the end of God! He never runs out! There's always so much more, and deeper yet to dig..... if we are willing. Let us all say "Yes! We are willing Lord!"


Stacey said...

Friday night was exciting! I knew God was doing big things in the lives of everyone there. How amazing to watch people come down and place their faith and trust in God! It truly was something I will never forget!!