Recently, I have been stretched beyond my comfort zone by working in a new capacity in our Encouraging Bookstore, completing book orders and preparing ministry books for print. During the transition, it was brought to my attention that this particular aspect of our ministry has been prone to attacks from the enemy since their very first book. And while we have endured a lot of growing pains during my transition, our Beloved has been faithful and always provided a path forward and solution to issues encountered.
My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience.” James 1:2-3, NKJV
However, last night the fire was turned up just a little bit more. The day started out amazing. Everyone woke up in a wonderful mood! After a wonderful breakfast, I was able to tidy up the house, complete a full school day with my perfectly cooperative children, breeze through lunch, and I even got the three youngest children to nap at the same time!!
Money was extremely tight this week. I prayed to my Beloved asking Him to show me how I was going to prepare a nutritious dinner with a budget of less than $10! He allowed me to sell a dresser that was taking up way too much space in my bedroom, which provided enough money for us treat the kids to take-out and ensure that we had groceries for the remainder of the week!
Since we were getting take-out, I was able to begin my ministry work much earlier in the evening. My EH and oldest daughter cleaned up dinner, showered the littles, sent them to me for goodnight cuddles and kisses, and then tucked them into bed. After which, they were able to spend some much-needed quality time together!! They both enjoy competitive sports and both of their favorite basketball teams are currently in the playoffs. It was so sweet to hear them cheer their teams on hearing the patter of the feet of my littles sneaking to catch a glimpse of the game! It was just all in all a great day!
As the game neared completion, so did my work. My oldest daughter kissed me goodnight, and my EH was sitting on the couch waiting for me finish. As I was doing one last final check before heading to bed, I noticed that I was missing an end quote on a scripture that I had just added to the chapter header. As soon as I typed in the quote, the document that I was working in auto-saved and timed out. I didn’t get concerned because it happens quite often when working in this particular template. But, once the screen refreshed the formatting on the book was just off. Chapter headers had different fonts, there were weird page breaks and just a whole host of other issues. I thought I would just do a simple ctrl+z to undo whatever happened and things just got worse from there. I was terribly perplexed! It was as if the document had a mind of its own. When I fixed one section, another section would reformat itself and I just became so frustrated. I didn’t understand what was going on. I grew more and more frustrated and was even at the point of tears. I just didn’t understand! I NEVER experienced anything like this before! I had been working for hours and basically had nothing to show for it!
So, as I sat there, frustrated, perplexed, crying, and praying, He placed it on my heart to “count it all joy.” He led me to start over. To prepare a brand new template and simply start over. Doing so kept me up until 4 am, but it allowed me to totally rest and turn it over to Him. In doing this He revealed to me that I needed Him for everything. He showed me that I am not alone and that He is there with me through the small obstacles as well as those that seem insurmountable. There is a common saying that the devil is in the details. Well, I learned last night that God is in the details and that He is here with us every day holding our hand and guiding us through it all!
I want to encourage you today that no matter what you are facing to “count it all joy” for in every trial that you face He is working to perfect some aspect of your character, behind the scenes, for His Glory.
My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing. If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.” James 1:2-8 NIV