More Miracle Stories

This week I told more provision stories. They were stories of how God answered prayer, moved in people, and moved in circumstances, all the while showing us He is our good Father, always seeing us, always for us.

There was a time we were going to be spending three months in Macedonia, and my husband and I each regretted not bringing something with us. We were talking about it and then I went into our bedroom, and those two things were sitting there next to each other alone in the middle of our bedroom floor. One was a mug my husband had regretted not packing, not something important, not something God cared about, but He cares a whole lot about people.

We learned that day to pray whenever we packed that the Lord would just put in our bags anything we forgot. We forget too much how He can and does take care of us. He must do so many miracles like that that we never notice. I told a few other stories about learning to pray first. We called a washing machine repair man who wasn’t going to be able to come for a few days. We realized we hadn’t prayed and the washing machine was fixed instantly. Another time computer fix-it people spent ten hours working on my computer and couldn’t fix the problem. I realized I hadn’t prayed and did, and it was fixed. I got on those stories because just two hours before I did my recording I was looking for something in the kitchen and kept looking where it belonged and my husband looked and one of our sons looked, and I gave up and moved on with dinner without it and then realized I hadn’t prayed. I apologized to the Lord and started praying. Walking back over to that same drawer I prayed, “Lord, please help me find…” I pulled open the drawer and it was just right there. I didn’t even have time to finish my sentence.

Once the Lord sent the miracle on the way before we even knew we needed help. Our phone stopped working, which was also our internet connection at the time. We were living in Istanbul. My husband didn’t want to take the day standing in line at a government office trying to report it and went out to go about his day and figured he’d tackle it another time. He left and there was a knock at the door. It was the phone repair man. He thought I was a lunatic as I asked him over and over again why he was there. He was like, “Is your phone not working? Well…” He had no idea why I was so crazy. God must have put us on his work order for the day before we even knew our phone wasn’t working.

Back when my husband left his work in Istanbul and we decided to work for Jesus and live without an income, the Lord sent us an encouragement, showing us a little glimpse about how He could provide for us. We didn’t need food or anything at the time; it was just an encouragement that He was in the decision and would be taking care of us. A man showed up at our apartment; he had never been there before. We don’t even know how he found us, but he brought us all the fruits and vegetables he hadn’t sold that day from his food cart that he used to sell in the streets. On his way over, he had stopped and bought treats for the kids, cookies and a whole cake. We ate that for dinner that night and our family gained an expression, “God provides cake too.” He doesn’t just make you eat your vegetables. God gives good gifts. He is a good Father. We have abundant life in Christ!

The final story of the week is of the time God gave us a glimpse into how He protects us. We had just arrived in Macedonia. Our now twenty-year-old daughter was only two then. She was very verbal, could speak in paragraphs. She and my husband were waiting alone at the bus stop to head into the Roma (Gypsy) village where his language teacher lived, where we would be living in the next year. It is called Shutka. My daughter asked him why those two men always came with them when they went there. My husband looked around and saw no one. “What two men?” She pointed to them. “Those two men. They always get on the bus and come with us when we go into Shutka.” They always did. This was just a time when He gave us a big reminder of the fact that we were always guarded.

Psalm 91:9-11 “If you make the Most High your dwelling– even the LORD, who is my refuge–then no harm will befall you, no disaster will come near your tent. For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways.”

Money Miracles

This week I shared some more money miracles. Some were just “little” miracles. Three times strangers just handed money to one of my sons, each time the same son. One of the times was his birthday and it paid for the whole celebration. During this time we were living without income. We had left our agency and regular support. You can read that story here.

Another time on the way to buy bread for breakfast, we found a coin on the street which was going to enable us to buy as much as usual. Then the seller threw in extra for the kids. We thought we were lacking, but God turned our lack into an abundance.

Twice we received checks in the mail unexpectedly when we had a big expense. Most recently, just a couple of years ago, we had a big dental bill and over a thousand dollars came in a check from a German bank saying that we had overpaid our heating bill. We hadn’t been in Germany for more than a year and a half.

Once, while we were living in Turkey, we needed $40,000 to renew our visas because of a change in the laws there. (It was supposed to prove we could afford to live there. We didn’t need to have that much in order to live there because we had money coming in from my husband teaching languages online to homeschoolers.) We didn’t have the money. If God wanted us there, He was going to have to figure it out.

At the time we were living in the middle of a school for Syrian refugees, literally. The apartments above and below us had emptied out at the same time and we scooped up out. Within a day or two we got a phone call. It was a friend who had been kicked out of the country. We asked where she was; she said outside. She had gotten back in, bravely showing up at the airport and getting detained and questioned, but they ended up letting her back in. She was with a Syria pastor who was heading a little school for Syrian refugee children. The landlord where they had been kicked them out and they were looking for a new place. We had one. They grew into both apartments and eventually into ours when we left.

While in the middle of all this work for Syrian refugees, we one day met Joseph who was helping getting money to a town in Syria that had been cut off because of the war. One of the Syrians was going to take the money over the border. The problem was that they needed to transfer the money from his organization’s European bank to Turkey to get the money. The Syrians couldn’t have bank accounts, so he asked us if we had one. We did. He asked if he could send $40,000 to us. (I wasn’t sure telling the story online if it had been dollars. My husband says it was dollars and it was the exact amount like that.) We told him how we needed $40,000 and asked if we could use his money to prove we had money in the bank. He was happy it was going to work out so well! We got the money, got a bank statement, took it all out and gave it to the Syrian christian to go help his home town.

Another story I shared was how a Turkish official at the government hospital worked to get us Turkish insurance to pay for our son’s entire two-month stay in the NICU. We never paid anything that whole time. His heart was moved to help us. We certainly didn’t ask if that could happen. He said no foreigner had ever received Turkish insurance before. And he got it started retroactively to cover from the day before he was born. No one knew how to do it, but he called in favors, pulled strings, and had the grace of God on him.

The final story I told this week was of the time my husband’s ATM card got eaten by an ATM machine. The bank who owned the machine said they wouldn’t help. That card was our only access to our money in America. We called the bank in America and the man said they would overnight a card to us. That was that. Simple. The next day it didn’t arrive. We figured it was because it was a Turkish holiday and they weren’t working, but it was really important to us, so my husband called our American bank and asked about the card being sent. He was told that they couldn’t have sent a card. They were not allowed to. We got transferred to the manager. We tried to explain. He explained that they couldn’t send a card. It was impossible. We would have to physically come in to get it. We explained that we weren’t asking for a card to be sent. We thought it already was. We were just wanting to check on it. He looked at our account and there was a note that it had been sent DHL overnight express. He was angry. He asked who we spoke to. It was Dale the best my husband could remember. There was no one who worked there by that name. He was mad, and my husband just excused himself from the conversation. The card arrived the next day. If it hadn’t happened to be the day before a holiday, we never would have known a miracle had occurred. It would have just seemed normal. God gave us a little glimpse of what He does for us, when we might have never even realized it.

Look for the miracles in every day. God is always working for your good. God is always loving you, so you never need to worry about what He’s up to. Rejoice, give thanks in all circumstances. God is a loving Father who takes care of His children. The rain falls on the righteous and the unrighteous, but the house of the one who builds his house on the Rock stands. Matthew 7:24-27

 

 

How Can This Be Free?

I shared the story about $1000 showing up in the bank as my latest miracle story. This is a fuller version of the story that I shared before on the site. It’s outdated at this time as my husband now helps me with EP as his work!

Easy Peasy All-in-One Homeschool

Below is something I posted about six years ago. I wanted to share it with you too. Someone questioned how this site could really be free.

How can this be free?

Part 1 – Stepping out of the boat

Why would I offer this for free? Let me tell you a piece of my story.

My husband and I have served the Lord overseas for more than 10 years. For several years we raised the money that we received monthly from our agency. When we came home on furlough, we spent each weekend in a different church, sharing our stories and hoping for financial support.

In 2008, we felt convicted to leave the system. We didn’t like it being such a business, a job. We thought serving the Lord should be 24/7/365, not a 40-hour week. My husband also felt like he was “unequally yoked” at his job teaching English…

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The Toilet Paper Story

We were living in Gaziantep, Turkey at the time, near the Syrian border, and this was during the time of the Syrian refugee crisis. Our city took in more refugees than any other place in the world. Our little city absorbed 500,000 refugees. We lived in a low-income area, so it strained relations. Rents soared. Refugees were given jobs. (Though people grew angry at the refugees, the real issue was the greed of the landlords raising rents with the higher demand and of the bosses hiring refugees because they could pay them less than minimum wage.) It grew tense in our area.

Our area was also hot. It could be 110 degrees and it never rained a drop all summer. I was still nursing our youngest, which just adds to the hot and sweaty. I asked the Lord to take us out of the city in August. I didn’t want to be there for another August. I told Dave about my prayer and told him the only way I would do it was if someone offered us their home. I wasn’t going to plan a vacation and I wasn’t going to ask someone if we could use their vacation home. I wasn’t going to answer my own prayer.

Well, some of our family traveled to Istanbul to hear a speaker and were welcomed in by a family at the church where the event was held. After dinner with the couple, I went on a walk around the outside of the apartment building with the wife. She was talking about their home in Finland. She told me how they always spent every July there, and then she turned to me and said, “You could go in August.”

Normally, we wouldn’t have considered such a thing because the Lord had trained us in our use of money and we didn’t spend it on things like vacations, but it was a direct answer to prayer. We took it to prayer and the Lord ended up providing extra money that month so that we could buy plane tickets without using any savings. And we got to spend two weeks in beautiful Finland, in the middle of the woods, on a lake, just beautiful.

We heard from friends while we were there that it was good we were gone. There was rioting in our neighborhood. Cars were being smashed in and such. The Lord arranged, however He does things like that, for us to be away during that time. It was a protection.

But also while we were there, myself and two or three of the older kids got a stomach bug. It was the only time in my whole life that I had diarrhea (but think of the blessing that the little kids didn’t get it!) I went to go to bed and realized that we were out of toilet paper. We had used it up. The store in the area was twenty minutes away and closed anyway that late at night. I put out napkins and went to bed grumbling about how the Lord had answered this prayer about vacation and then this, not my idea of a perfect vacation. I should have instead thanked Him for His perfect gift and remembered that when we ask for bread, our good Father doesn’t give us a stone.

In the morning when I went to the bathroom, there was a roll of toilet paper sitting on the back of the toilet in each bathroom. (I checked even and it was a different brand than what we had used before and a brand that wasn’t sold at the store there.)

My good Father not only provided (without me asking), but He also was protecting my heart. We need to keep our hearts thankful, which we can do. All we have to do is know Him. Because if we know Him, we know He’s always good, always loving, always faithful, always trustworthy.

The Miracle of the Toilet Paper

I’m going to start sharing some of our miracle stories by video on Facebook and Youtube. I will share those on the blog for you all, so you won’t be missing out.

I want people to get to know God as a good Father. A good father provides, protects, cares for his children. That’s what God does. We can be free from worry and fear and the selfishness that drives us to hurt ourselves and others.

The first story I’ll be sharing seemed appropriate for the times; it’s the time God provided toilet paper for our family. You can look for that story in the next blog post.