I settled down to write this week's blog, looked up the Bible verse, and saw,
"Don't love money."
"Well," I thought, "I should be okay with that, seen as there's not much around at the moment."
I'm aware that this verse focuses on the love of money, but my thoughts when in a different direction.
Like many families, the pandemic sent us into financial turmoil in the summer of 2020. Within the space of a couple of months, we went from relative comfort to scarcity. I'll make it clear before I write anything else, I'm aware we're still in a fortunate position compared to many. We have not lost loved ones due to this terrible illness, and we have found a way through thanks to the love and support of friends and family. However, we do understand how many families across the country feel at the moment. When your financial security is shattered through job or business loss the fear of what might happen can be overwhelming. When you can't see how you will pay the mortgage or find the money for the weekly shop, it's challenging not to focus on money. With each card transaction, you're waiting for the dreaded words "sorry love, it's been declined." Excel spreadsheets are worked and reworked to try and make the numbers add up. Everything feels uncertain, and although you trust God, it can be hard to push fear aside.
"Be satisfied with what you have."
When the crisis hit our family, I remember sitting with my journal and asking myself that very question.
What do I have?
Yes, some fears and worries crept in, but ultimately, I had a great amount to be 'satisfied' with. I'll admit I was afraid, like some of you might be now. As I continued to write in my journal, I knew God was with our family. It's where the idea for the 'God with us' project began. The plan for 2021 was to place constant reminders in my life that God is with me all the time, no matter what.
It would have been easy to become "obsessed with money" (The Passion Translation), but I'd been there and done that, and God had shown me many times before that He is faithful. I took Him at His word. All I had to do was get through the day in front of me while holding firmly onto His promises.
"I will never fail you.
I will never abandon you."
So I walked through each day continually reminding myself of all the times God had shown up before. I reminded myself that He had never failed me, and even in my darkest days, He never abandoned me. It doesn't mean everything will work out perfectly. Even now, as God has blessed us with new employment and new opportunities for soulwithaview, everything feels a little precarious. We are reminded in these verses that rather than placing our trust in money to fulfil our needs, we should place our trust in the one who said:
"I will never leave you, I will always be by your side."
Hebrews 13:5 (VOICE)