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God, Giver of All Good Gifts,
At the first few months of my new job, I sat between two women that hated each other and once I arrived they directed all their bitterness at ME. I heard nothing but mean bossing and criticism all day long in STEREO. I wouldn't complain but co-workers that could overhear it complained to my boss. They were harsh, harsh, women, now ganging up on ME, the new step-child.
For MONTHS I would pray every day, at every unfair attack, "God, I'm giving this to YOU, I know You see this and I'm just going to 'cast my cares on You, leave them at the cross like the songs say. Help me try to leave them there.'" It was so bad sometimes I actually cried at night and I never cry. But I couldn't quit because it was part time and paid well. My kids were still young and I needed to be home by 2.
After months of this the Christmas Ball was scheduled. I searched and searched for something to wear and almost bought a beautiful watery blue skirt but it was WAY too expensive and I couldn't find anything that matched it. For weeks, one of my "step-sisters" bragged about a blue skirt she got, went on and on about it and my heart would ache to go buy the one that I saw, but I didn't. Once in a while she asked me accusingly, "What are YOU going to wear?" and all I could say was oh, just an old black dress I have. It was shabby and hardly formal, but I thought it might get by.
The day of the ball we were all excited, a big Christian name (though I never heard of him) was going to perform for us exclusively. At 5:00 I was in a rush to get home to get ready when I heard Him tell me to stop by Gottschalks on the way home. I couldn't believe it. There was NO TIME and I'd all ready scoured the stores. But the Holy Spirit WAS insistent, so I went. And there, all alone on a rack, boldly marked "CLEARANCE" was an AMAZING long black sequined dress that was a knockout, the only one there and wouldn't ya know it was just my size and fit like a glove? I was STUNNED and after all the discounts it was $22.79! Un-freaking-believable price.
Now, really late, I raced home, wondering if I could actually wear it because it was way revealing. I remembered an old black leotard that might match that maybe I could wear under it that wasn't quite so low cut. This was a Christian operation and the dress alone would have been...bad. But I hadn't seen the leotard in years and was afraid I'd trashed it. I prayed "Lord, please help me find it." As I parked in the garage rushing for the house, something caught my eye as I passed the LAWNMOWER and for some BIZARRE reason it was under the freaking lawnmower! I have no idea how I noticed it in my disaster of a garage and I never mow the lawn, my kids do.
I grabbed it, WASHED it, dried it while I showered and swooped my hair up (I never do that but it worked as if by itself). My little son popped up somehow with an old but well kept silver lacy shawl that I had forgotten and was perfect. Everything fell into place like a miracle, I felt like Cinderella being transformed at the last minute by bits and pieces from the most bizarre places. And when I walked into the ballroom a little late, people were already seated, which made my entrance noticed. The room seemed to go silent and I actually heard a few GASPS. (I was from the mountains and all my clothes never really fit in with the city so maybe that was why it was such a shock). I remember the glare from that "step-sister" and her eyes said, "Old black dress, yeah, right."
To top it off, SHE was wearing the exact same expensive blue skirt that I had almost bought but she wore it with a fuzzy mauve top that didn't match at all and...(delete) enough said.
It was an AMAZING night. So yes, God is the Giver of all good things. And sometimes, if we give it all to Him, He gives it back with a sense of humor :)
If you think the small things in life are too small for God's attention, think again. I know wars are going on, people are suffering tremendously in different parts of the world, etc., so to think God would care about a dress for a Christmas ball seems wrong. But God is not limited. He is omnipresent, comforting our sorrows doesn't diminish what He's doing anywhere else. The Bible said He cares so much for us that He even counts the hairs on our heads. That means even if we lose an eyelash, God cares enough to notice. He thinks of all of us all at the same time, there is no end of Him.
What is happening in other parts of the world, the fervent prayer of a mother for an ailing child is not heard any less if God takes the time to care for us individually. He has a plan in every case. And if He comforts you uniquely, believe it. Don't let the enemy lie to you and claim God doesn't care about the little things in our lives. God does. He is there. When you fall asleep at night, He is thinking of you. When you wake up in the morning, He is STILL thinking of you. God is with us. He is there. And I couldn't be more grateful.
- Jen Shroder
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