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Expecting God’s Blessings

I’m a new Christian. There’s something about that phrase that gives me comfort. Christians seem to love it and not expect much from me. At the same time, though, it can be discouraging. I have put into practice everything (well, almost everything) my pastor has taught me, pray just like he told me to, read the Bible … but I always seem to think that I’m not quite up to par with more experienced Christians. The long–timers. You know, the ones who’ve been around the block for years and years and know many more Bible verses than I do. They can quote them in a second! I can’t. The only thing I can seem to remember is the belt of truth. And I don’t even know which chapter it’s in.

See, for a long time, I didn’t really believe that God cared about our daily lives. I always thought He had many more important things to deal with than my need for hip clothes at a good price, or that last 10 (okay, 15) pounds I need to lose, or the way my clients view their new hairdos. But I’m learning. He’s into that stuff … big time.

Iremember the first time I had a prayer answered. My girlfriend and I were talking about getting my daughter into ballet. She said it would be great for her to be into some sort of sport. Knowing my financial circumstances, she told me to pray that God would put into my path a dance school owner who would work with me in a trade-off. I thought about it for a second and thought, Yeah, okay, I’ll do that. Like God is going to worry about Emily’s ballet lessons while her mommy is trying to figure out how to put food on the table next week. I told Lynn I would do it, and like a good girl, I offered a half-hearted “please” prayer right away so I wouldn’t forget thinking, Yeah, like this is the biggest thing on Your agenda, God. And then I forgot about it.

About a week later, I was doing a hundred up-dos for prom, and the last one was this adorable Christian girl. We were talking quite a bit about boys and stuff, and then her mom came in to see how things were going. While we were talking, her mom began sharing how she just couldn’t afford to get her hair done the way she wanted. When she told me she owned a dance studio and didn’t bring in much income from it, I dropped my comb! I simply looked at her and asked, “Would you be interested in doing trade out … your hair for my daughter’s ballet lessons?” Her studio was right across the street from where I worked, and her lessons for the summer were on Mondays, my only day off during the week. Here I was, face to face with God’s blessing, His answer to my prayer. And she said, “Yes”!

I am still shocked by this whole scenario. If God would bless me with that prayer request, something I just half-heartedly prayed for, how much more will He answer the prayers that I pray every day? Author Ron Hutchcraft once wrote about God’s blessing being like a Christmas present. If you were to open it before Christmas, it wouldn’t be quite so special; it wouldn’t have the same meaning. But if you pray and pray, and believe with all your heart it will be given to you, then when you get it, in His time, it will be glorious and beautiful.

So now I never quit. I never let up on my prayers, no matter how superficial they may seem to someone else, or how silly I used to think they were in God’s eyes. The point is, they are important to me, and that is important to God. He wants us to be happy. He wants us to look to Him and know that He’s there and that He’s involved in every aspect of our lives. He wants us to want Him, to love Him and to trust Him. And we can, because He is a good God, a trustworthy God, a righteous God. And He will come through; He will act. You just need to believe it with everything you are. And remember, His will is the most important thing: If it’s good for us, He’ll give it; if it’s not, well, then, we probably don’t want to be messing around with it in the first place.

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So dream on, pray for what you want, and believe it will happen, no matter how silly and insignificant it may seem or how tedious it may become. Never quit. Fight the good fight no matter what the odds, because our God does His best work during the worst possible moments when all seems hopeless. Actually, that’s when I get excited. When everything is stacked against me and my world is collapsing around me, I know He’ll pull something out at the last minute that will just blow me away, and that answer will be like a cool rain on a hot Florida summer day.

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