One of the first things that God did after creating man was to put him to work. Genesis 2:14 (NLT) says:
The Lord God placed the man in the Garden of Eden to tend and watch over it.
Man is called to work. It is in our very fabric. But so many times, people can get so caught up in their work that it is an obsession that kills every relationship around a person. How many families do you know where the dad has very little to do with the children because his life is controlled by his work? In almost every case I know of like that, the children are screaming for attention because they are not getting it from a parent who is instead giving all the attention to work. Their screaming takes the form of acting out through rebellion and behavior problems that are deep-seated needs to get attention by any means possible. That is one extreme.
The other extreme is the man that just won’t work. This man is just lazy. Or sorry. Either way, there is no excuse for it. The Bible is clear in saying that if a man won’t work, then he shouldn’t eat (2 Thes 3:10). Whereas the first man we talked about is over in one ditch on the side of the road, this man is in the other ditch. We have to be on the road – somewhere in the middle. But like so many areas of life, we Christians like to be in one ditch or the other instead of living the balanced life.
There are others that are in a different situation. Among those are people that are not able to work for medical or other reasons. This is where I find myself today and the source of frustration for me for several months now. With my son in ongoing chemo treatments, we had to make a decision on what to do about his care. Our insurance was through my wife’s employer and she was under contract to teach this year. That left me. My work had fallen off greatly and I was praying for direction on what to do about it. Then the situation with our son happened, and I was left with no choice about it – I had to provide care for my sons.
Still, I have struggled with the fact that I am not working outside the home. I have a new appreciation for work-at-home moms who are raising children and being a homemaker. It is no easy task and I salute you! But it is a tough thing for a man to not be out in the field and killing something to bring home. As I mentioned early on – it is who we are and what we are made for.
So here is what I have been reminded of in my current situation – God is my source. A job is not my source. An income is not my source. God alone fulfills that role. Though I have had the added frustration of watching how tight things are financially each month because of the lost income for our family, I have seen time and again how God has miraculously come through for us. Just as we saw victory for our son over cancer through a miraculous healing by the spoken Word of God, so must victory in the area of finances come as well. I keep reminding myself to speak words of LIFE and abundance over everything we do. I talk to my mailbox and tell it to bring forth the fruit and supply that God has promised us in His word. I talk to my checking account. Does that sound weird? Yup! But the key is that I am SPEAKING the promises of God over every area of our lives. It sure beats cursing it. It sure beats complaining about what we don’t have. If we are going to walk the walk of faith, we have to talk the talk of faith. Nothing happens until something is spoken!
“So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; It shall not return to Me void, But it shall accomplish what I please, And it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it.” -Isaiah 55:11
So how do you return God’s Word to Him? You SPEAK His word. You say it out loud. Find the scriptures that promise you what it is that you need and remind God of His promises by speaking it back to Him. It will not return void. You may think that sounds arrogant or as if God owes us something. God owes us nothing. He already paid it all by sending Jesus to the cross. But He told us to speak His promises back to Him. In Isaiah 43:26 He explicitly tells us to remind Him! Jacob did it in Gen 31:12 when he thought that his brother was about to kill him. He reminded God of His promises. When folks ask what we did to to see Caleb healed, it’s simple – Jesus died to heal Caleb 2,000 years ago, so that was settled. We posted scripture verses all over our house – on doors, on cupboards, on walls – and we said them out loud and thanked God for His Word prospering in our situation. He spoke His promises concerning Caleb’s healing back to Him. And guess what… it worked! And it will work for you, too, and for me in the other areas of my life where I need it.
Here is further reading – a great article by Brother Kenneth Hagin on the subject.
“And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.” -Phil 4:19
“As for the rich in this world, charge them not to be proud and arrogant and contemptuous of others, nor to set their hopes on uncertain riches, but on God, Who richly and ceaselessly provides us with everything for [our] enjoyment.” 1 Tim 6:17
“But you shall [earnestly] remember the Lord your God, for it is He Who gives you power to get wealth, that He may establish His covenant which He swore to your fathers, as it is this day.” -Deut 8:18
“Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in every way and [that your body] may keep well, even as [I know] your soul keeps well and prospers.” – 3 John 2