God's Treasure House

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It was final---we were moving! It was final but all the plans and details were not. We were leaving my beloved Bible study group who had mentored and loved me well, cared deeply for my family, and shown me the face of Jesus for the first time in my life. Cheraw, South Carolina, the place I had complained of moving to, in the beginning, was to become “where I moved from”.

In the lonely time warp of Gary living out his last days in Savannah, (the place we thought we were moving to until God intervened), it was up to me to carry the household, sell the house, and prepare for the transition to Tennessee, our new landlocked home. We hadn’t even made the trip yet to find a house, which left me one option…lifting my concerns to my heavenly Father.

I longed for a newly built house but we were taking a loss on our house in South Carolina and the prices in Tennessee were higher. My hopes morphed from new to: “whatever you want us to have, Lord, even if it is a barn”. Days stretched into months. I waited, and prayed, and waited.

One day, I felt compelled to draw a sea shell, then two more. It took all day to draw one, another day to draw the other two, a third day to paint them and add ink lines. I truly felt that the Spirit had taken hold of my hands---I had never been able to draw or paint anything with this detail and was amazed by the end of the third day. They now needed framing, even though I had no idea where they would hang.

Parking my car in front of the frame shop, a man walked up to me and asked me if I would like to have a Tiger Conch shell. This was so random that it shocked me into stuttering a reply, “Well, ok, but I don’t want to take such a valuable shell from you!” He explained that he had been diving and had two, so I gladly accepted. He retrieved it, handed it to me, turned and headed back to his car, saying, “Have a great day!”

The paintings and magnificent shell became the centerpieces of our new bedroom in my newly constructed house in the great city of Cookeville, TN! Even thirty years later, each time I look at them, I marvel at the way God wove the pieces of my move here together for my good and His glory. He foresaw the depth of my longing for ocean days of kids covered with sand, long quiet stretches with only the sounds of waves and chattering seagulls, thunderheads building on the horizon, and salt breezes touching my lips. The Tiger Conch shell was the prize never found in all our days of searching for treasured shells amid all the common, broken and odd things the waves washed up.

Today, as I remember those things, I am in awe of an intimate and infinite God, loving and merciful, meticulous in showing his love in the details of my life. It is remembering the ways God is my loving Father, providing for me exceedingly, abundantly more than I can think or ask that inspire heartfelt worship. It is the ways He shows up, large and small, that inspire me to trust Him further and deeper.

But I trust in your grace, my heart rejoices as you bring me to safety. I will sing to Adonai, because he gives me even more than I need.

Psalm 13:5     

Thankfulness is the key to God’s treasure house, praise the threshold, and trust, the foundation.

Do you have times when it is difficult to praise God? Try thanking Him out loud, even if you do not feel it, trusting Him even if you cannot see the results; praise will come as you realize His provision and caring for you through Jesus. He is present. He knows you. He desires to interact with you. He loves you.

Prayer: God, thank you for your provision. Provision today and provision to come. I worship you for always showing love that is exceedingly and abundantly more than I could think or ask.

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Kay Powell is a follower of Jesus and has been at the River for 13 years.  She has 3 adult children and 7 grands.  Kay is an avid observer of life who loves to express her creative and inquisitive self through writing and art. 

River Community Church