I just spent the last two weeks in Texas. When I landed, people wanted to know why I was there. What was the special visit for. First question: Was I pregnant? Nope, better. So here's the story on why I flew home to Texas.
So I'm finally reading, The Circle Maker by Mark Batterson. If you haven't read it, you MUST. He talks about praying and asking for specifics, because when you're specific about your prayer request, God gets the glory. You can't chalk it up to chance.
So that next morning I wrote in my prayer journal, 'Please Lord, can I have $200 to go home in February?'
Now, hold the phone…. I know $200 is nothing for most people. But Tim and I live in one of the most expensive counties in the country! Starbucks is a splurge. Wait, pulling through to buy a soda is exciting! I could go on about what excites me now, but I don't want you to think I've lost my mind, so I'll stop there.
See my parents had just been here for Christmas. I had been looking forward to that since the day they booked the tickets two months prior. I was giddy with excitement, yet almost the minute they landed, my mom got a cold. Days later, I got that same cold. For their entire trip, we were sick. To say I was disappointed would be a DRASTIC UNDERSTATEMENT….. So I wanted to make up for the sick trip with a surprise visit home. But, I wanted to fly home February, it was January 9th…. so this prayer needed to be answered stat before plane ticket prices went sky high. So really two prayers needed to be answered, I wanted to fly home in February, I wanted $200 and the plane ticket needed to be around that cost.
It was specific. But as I wrote that, The Lord brought to remembrance the last time I had prayed for a specific amount of money. To be honest, I pray a lot about finances here in California, but not really ever a specific amount.
It was my last year of Interior Design school, I felt like we couldn't afford anymore school debt. I already had $35,000 (I think we made $32,000 a year!)….. and I was about to take on $10,000 more. I remember so vividly praying for $10,000 and I just knew The Lord was going to provide. I was so disappointed that nothing divine had happened. The money didn't just show up in my bank account and I went like everyone else and took out another school loan for my last year. I was bummed that God didn't come through like I felt He said He would. I had just known that He would and when He didn't, I wondered why miracles didn't happen for me. Why did some people get these amazing blessings of someone walking up to them, saying, "The Lord told me give you $10,000…." But it didn't happen for me.
So fast forward another year, we had bought a house in Fort Worth as I finished my last year at the University of North Texas. When I finished with my $45,000 degree, I never got a design job because most of them were in Dallas and I had just bought a house in Fort Worth. I would interview, they would ask about my 45 minute commute and I wouldn't get the job. So, I felt like the home had become more of a burden than a blessing. I just couldn't understand why it didn't happen for me. I was talented, a hardworker, charismatic, yet I couldn't land a job to save my life. (Funny enough, probably wouldn't be where I am now if I had gotten a job, another blessing.)
After only living in the home about a year and a half, we decided that we wanted to sell, flip it and make a large profit for the next chapter in our lives. When we sold the home for a hefty profit and we divvied up where money was going to go, without thinking about it $10,000 went to pay off one school loan. It's funny how The Lord didn't answer my prayer like I wanted him to, he answered like He wanted to.
Turned out, I got a lot more than I was originally praying for. I thought $10,000 was huge…. but the profit we made on the home was extravagant.
So you might be wondering why I'm telling you this. Not to brag, not to boast about money (because it's gone!!!) but to give The Lord glory for what he's done for me. Because when The Lord brought to my remembrance about that situation, I started to write it down. I hadn't given God the credit like he deserved. So on January 9th, I wrote the above blog post.
So to sum up my day, that morning I wrote in my prayer journal requesting $200. That afternoon, I started on a blog post about the $10,000. Later that afternoon, I was sitting in the clubhouse and Tim walked in and handed me a piece of paper and said, 'You're gonna want to see this.' He had just gotten a bonus. I was blown away. I told Tim to look at what I had written earlier that day about the $10,000 in a blog post and in my prayer journal about $200. The Lord had answered. It was of course more than $200, it was extravagant.
But as awesome as it was…. I had questions. Why had The Lord answered THAT prayer. I have been praying for our finances since the day we landed in California. So why answer the $200 prayer, but yet again, go above and beyond. Today, as I was reading The Circle Maker again, he talked about getting prayed for his asthma to be healed as a young boy. The next morning he woke up disappointed to know he still had asthma, yet his warts were all gone from his feet. It felt familiar…. No, I don't have warts….. But I had prayed thousands of prayers for much more important things, for friendships, for finances, for jobs, for hearings, yet you answer my prayer for a plane ticket home! Why? "Because darling, I want you to know I am able……"