I am more girl than I like to admit.
I try to be Miss Independent (circumstances sometimes don’t give us any choice), but being your own person is highly overrated, and one day I hope to become Mrs. Dependent. Of all the qualities I look for in a future Mister, one of the less exciting is this: provider. I know, feminism, gender equality, yadda yadda yadda... But you can’t tell me every woman doesn’t have a small desire, even if it’s well-hidden, to be taken care of. Not “you’re sick, so I’ll make soup,” but “I love you and you need to eat, so I’ll look for a job.”
This is where I struggle the most in my relationship with God. I know that He is Jehovah-Jireh, the Lord who provides. I know the verse in Isaiah that says, “your Maker is your husband.” But I still find it difficult to remember that He, my Husband, will provide for me. I expect it of my earthly future husband, but not the Lord my maker and provider.
Then Jesus called his disciples to him and said, “I have compassion on the crowd because they have been with me now three days and have nothing to eat. And I am unwilling to send them away hungry, lest they faint on the way.”
Sometimes I get the idea that when Jesus says “take up your cross” and “if you save your life, you’ll lose it,” He means I’ll either stop having physical needs or stop having them provided for. He wants the ultimate sacrifice, right? Jesus knew the practical, physical needs of those following Him, even though they did not ask, and get this -- he did not want them to faint. I believe behind the desire to be provided for is the deeper desire to be cared for. Sisters, he has compassion and does not want us to faint.
And the disciples said to him, “Where are we to get enough bread in such a desolate place to feed so great a crowd? And Jesus said to them, “How many loaves do you have?” They said, “Seven, and a few small fish.” ... And they all ate and were satisfied.
This is one of the hardest things for me to grasp: God is not limited by circumstances. It’s easier for me to believe this about some things than others. I worry about finding a job next year, being able to find friends and a church family, not spending the rest of my life alone... If I’m honest, it’s the circumstances that worry me more than anything. I have no doubt that God will provide given the conditions are favorable, but what if I’m in a desolate place? Is my need important enough for a miracle? Theirs was, and they were not left unsatisfied.
He took the seven loaves and the fish, and having given thanks he broke them and gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds.
I almost overlooked this little part of the story, but I think it’s significant. Twice recently I’ve had people remind me that although He is a personal God, He is also an interpersonal one -- He works through people. Don’t be surprised when He provides for you through someone else. Don’t be surprised when He provides for someone else through you.
If you’re like me, you’re often surprised when He provides at all. Why? I question his feelings for me, I wonder if he’ll come through in a pinch, I’m not sure about his methods... Yeah, I think it has something to do with being a 100% normal girl. And that’s ok, because I have a 100% faithful Maker-Provider-Husband God.
*Scriptures taken from Matthew 15:32-37 and Isaiah 54:5 (ESV).