by Elizabeth Burgard Fulgaro © 2015
Let’s begin by getting one thing straight. By “Everyday Gifts” I am not referring to gifts which are everyday as in mundane, but magnificent, often surprising gifts the Lord provides to us during our everyday lives. Sometimes these are more apparent and sometimes they are not.
This week, there were several which were so spectacular to me, they beg to be shared! The foundation of all of it simply was the desire to obey Him every moment, like Jesus did Father. Amazingly, the more I have sought to do His will and only His will over the years, the more His amazing, miraculous-seeming gifts seem to accompany me along the way. Goodness, what an encouragement to keep going!
Every day I am asking Him constantly about everything. I don’t always hear accurately. In our humanity, none of us do. However, I seek to hear with the faith of a child, so that as My Father, He will rescue me from whatever may not be His will. I ask Him which route to take when I am out walking or driving the car, which tasks to do and in which order, and even what He would have me wear. One morning this week, when I asked Him this, He gave me a picture in my mind as usual of what He wanted. I began to gather the pieces for that particular work outfit from the closet. Suddenly I realized it didn’t seem right to wear what I thought He was showing me yet. I had grey shoes and deep maroon shoes. These would class with this outfit. It seemed to need black shoes, but the ones the Lord had had me order as soon as I accepted the unexpected new job had not yet arrived.
My husband called to me that he was ready to leave for work. I was lost in thought. Hmm…Had I heard the Holy Spirit correctly? This was the outfit, I had seen in my mind when I asked Him what to wear. Did He have something different He was trying to show me?
I walked with my husband to the front door as usual for our small prayer together and good-byes for the day. He opened the door to head to his car. Low and behold there was a box on our front porch which had not been there after work the night before. It must have been delivered later than usual. No. Couldn’t be…could it? It was. I was stunned. I started to giggle. I pulled the box inside, opened it and pulled out the black shoes. Filled with delight and wonder at the magnificence of our Lord, I went and got dressed for the day in the outfit He had provided.
Through the new job there are many old contacts to be renewed and new contacts to be made. He is making it exceedingly obvious regarding people with whom I have had prior good, productive relationship that we were also put in each other’s lives for such a time as this. One of these friends who works with wounded warriors and their families just last week had let me know there was a woman assigned to work with families of the fallen in nearby Sacramento. I was headed to a regional collaborative meeting in Sacramento one morning this week for those involved especially in veteran/military and military family support. Looking at the day’s schedule I noticed I had a few hours open following the meeting in the early afternoon. I asked the Lord if He perhaps could make it possible for me to get the contact information for this woman in the hopes she might have time for us to meet briefly. It would be good if I could find out more about her role supporting these family members and see if this new financial coaching program of which I am part, might be a blessing.
Before beginning the hour-plus drive to the meeting, I listened and obeyed the Lord for each task I was to do and when and how I was supposed to do it. Such “listening” for His will is the only way I can survive. Like so many of us, there is always more to do than time to do it and He alone knows the perfect order in which to accomplish what He alone knows must be done.
I looked at the clock. It had gotten late—much later than I had wanted to leave. It would be my first time attending a regional veteran support collaborative meeting in a number of years and my very first time at this Sacramento Valley meeting. I so wanted to be there on time—maybe even before it started! This would no longer be possible. Once again, the Lord was orchestrating my timing in a humbling way. Ugh. Yes, Lord. Definitely not my will, but Yours.
The freeway was clear with no slow-downs to mention. Blessing! Astoundingly, I arrived in the location where the map had shown the building should be just ten minutes late. Blessing! (Though I have learned, even when there are unwanted traffic delays, sometimes these are setting up the Lord’s exquisite timing.) A bit disconcerting, however was that the building where the meeting was to be held did not seem to be where it had been indicated on the map. I stared at the building before me, which was did not have the right address. “Lord, where do I go?” I cried out to Him in my thoughts. Not 5 seconds later, a car raced into the parking lot from another entrance on my right, cutting me off, oblivious that I was even there and that I had the right of way. The near miss took me by surprise. However, the Lord used it to cause me to look in the direction to which it sped on my left. Oh my goodness, there obscured by a line of trees was another section of parking lot, which I had not noticed before. I turned left and went in the direction where the little speeding car had disappeared. Indeed, there it was: my destination. The car which almost hit me in this case had not been a threat, but a gift to point me where I needed to go. I parked and wasted no time going in.
I tried to open the door as unobtrusively as possible. Yes, the meeting had started. The tables where participants were seated were in a U-shape to the facilitator. “Lord, where do I sit?” Immediately, almost before I finished asking the question, my eye fell on a particular chair. Wanting to disrupt as little as possible, I did not question, but took that seat. Just like God, I was just in time to introduce myself. The meeting continued.
The woman next to me had very pointed questions for one of the speakers. Her questions were related to service availability for families of the fallen. Well, that’s interesting, I thought. Wouldn’t it be funny if… Unsuccessfully I tried to sneak a peek at her name tag. The meeting ended. We all stood up, shook hands an introduced ourselves once again to one another. Indeed, incredibly, stunningly in the way only our Lord could do, the woman sitting next to me WAS the woman for whose contact information I had prayed so that I might be able to visit her. I had not had to try to get an appointment. I had not had to get instructions to drive where she was. Instead, the Lord had brought her to me and vice-versa. Had I arrived before the meeting the way I had planned, it is likely I would have taken another seat and missed out on the gift the Lord had for me that morning, which was in direct answer to my prayer, above and beyond that for which I had asked. We had a productive conversation and agreed to stay in contact.
Everyday gifts from our Lord—exactly what I need and when I need it (no earlier and no later). These are His gifts in the management of everyday existence, which do not eliminate all negatives from life, but assist in the work I am to do for Him wherever I am at that moment. Through these gifts and the God-stories which they create, those who hear the stories receive a taste of encouragement and hope that our Lord really is real and infinitely good.
What are some of the gifts the Lord has given you in your everyday? Assuredly they are already there whether you can recognize them yet or not. As you continue to seek His will and take the courage to try to walk it out, these gifts will multiply and so will your joy in the Lord. May you enjoy many blessed days in His service, delighting in His many, ongoing, amazing gifts!
NUGGETS OF GOD’s WISDOMGod’s Wisdom is more precious than gold. This blog by Elizabeth Fulgaro helps readers discover God’s way versus the world’s one “nugget” at a time. http://www.ascendinworship.wordpress.com www.eaglesnestfoundation.org
Elizabeth Fulgaro is a wife, mother, writer, inspirational speaker, worship leader, composer, singer & recording artist. She is also a Certified Financial Planner and Accredited Financial Counselor with a heart for helping Christians understand and steward their finances God’s way.
For books, worship albums, Bible studies and teachings written by Elizabeth Fulgaro or to schedule her to come speak to your group please visit www.holyspiritpress.org Music can be purchased and audio clips heard at www.cdbaby.com/Artist/ElizabethFulgaro and on itunes.
Elizabeth is the Founder of Eagles Nest Foundation which provides spiritual support & encouragement to military and military families as well as those in physical and emotional battles (such as cancer, long-term illness) as well as those grieving a loss. For information email email@example.com or visit www.eaglesnestfoundation.org