From The Manse Win­dow

The People's Friend - - Contents - by Rev. Su­san Sara­puk.

EV­ERY Fri­day, I buy fruit in the mar­ket in Swansea. I love au­tumn be­cause that’s when my favourites ap­pear – crunchy Cox’s ap­ples and big, fat, juicy Pres­i­dent plums.

We are for­tu­nate in this coun­try that the har­vest is al­ways plen­ti­ful.

Now I’m no longer in full-time min­istry and work as a free­lance writer, money can be tight. It’s easy to worry about how I’ll pay the bills.

That’s when I need to re­mem­ber that I’m liv­ing in a dif­fer­ent place. In the king­dom where God has promised to sup­ply all my needs if I trust in him.

But it’s not easy to trust when you don’t know where your next penny is com­ing from, is it?

Faith is some­thing we grow in. The faith of Je­sus’s dis­ci­ples grew over the years, be­cause they saw what he did, and learned from his teach­ing.

“I know what it is to be in need and I know what it is to have plenty,” Paul wrote to the church at Philippi. “I have learned the se­cret of be­ing con­tent in any and ev­ery sit­u­a­tion, whether well-fed or hun­gry, whether liv­ing in plenty or in want. I can do ev­ery­thing through him who gives me strength.”

What was Paul’s se­cret? Know­ing that God was all he needed.

I’ve been read­ing about King David. His favourite son, Ab­sa­lom, had de­clared him­self king and driven out David and his sup­port­ers.

One day, David and his men are pass­ing by a man who starts to curse them in the name of the Lord.

One of David’s men wants to si­lence him by cut­ting off his head, but David says, no, leave him alone.

Maybe God is speak­ing through this man, and if he isn’t then what this man says doesn’t mat­ter.

That is per­fect faith. In the midst of his pain, David trusts God and takes the rough with the smooth. He knows God will vin­di­cate and res­tore him.

I con­fess some­times I toss and turn, un­able to get to sleep over money wor­ries.

But if the Lord of the uni­verse is my fa­ther, and if Je­sus has promised to pro­vide, then why am I wor­ry­ing?

Per­haps that’s what we need to learn: there is al­ways enough with God, but we don’t al­ways know when it’s go­ing to come our way. And we have to trust that he’s got it all un­der con­trol.

In the past few months, I’ve been writ­ing down all the oc­ca­sions when God has pro­vided for me in a spe­cial way.

For ex­am­ple, my Bible study group no­ticed that I was keep­ing my watch in my pocket be­cause the strap had bro­ken, so they bought me a watch as a thank-you present.

Some­times if we don’t keep track of things we for­get how God has an­swered prayer.

On days when I’m feel­ing anx­ious over money, I read over the list and re­flect on how God hasn’t let me down. ■

Next week: Rev. Ian W.F. Hamil­ton tries his hand at graphol­ogy.

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