It's been an interesting week... I'll see if I can hit some of the highlights.
I've been stressing a good bit over money lately - and I probably shouldn't. God always gets me by in one way or another. But since I got laid off on May 28th and have had absolutely nada de income since then, I have begun restricting my trips to Oregon City and thus to church as well. The first thing I cut was my Saturday voyage to English classes... I offered to hold a class in Molalla for any of my students that wanted to come, only one took me up on it. The Wednesday night church service seemed like the next logical one to go, since I have to go to Oregon City twice on Sundays anyway to pick Damian up from his dad's. I hadn't been to a Wednesday night service since May. But this week I really wanted to go... but I was afraid if I did I wouldn't have enough gasoline to get back to OC on Saturday for skit rehearsal for ASBA and then back to church again twice on Sunday. Yikes! So I decided to practice that "giving it to God" thing. I told him that I was pretty sure if he wanted me to be there, he'd find a way to cover the gas money and I'd just trust him. Did God deliver? Um, yeah, I'd say he definitely made a statement. While I was at church Wednesday night, someone gave me $50 out of the blue. That's TWO tanks of gas. For those who will argue that it was coincidence, let me ask you... how often does someone coincidentally give YOU $50? Yeah, that's what I thought. And God wasn't even done yet.
On Thursday, I found out that the Oregon Unemployment Department had finally pulled its collective head out of its collective backside on and decided that, yes, I am eligible for unemployment benefits... a mere six weeks after I got laid off. And when did this actually happen? Wednesday... the very day I was dithering around worrying about having enough money to drive to church. God had already been all over that one, and I was too busy fretting to pay attention. The money didn't actually get deposited into my account until Friday, but that still would have been in plenty of time to get to skit rehearsal on Saturday. It seems that God was merely reassuring me with the $50... something I'd notice, something I couldn't ignore or overlook. Not the first time God has pulled that particular stunt, actually, but last time it was $5, not $50.
Also one of my students (the one who lives in Molalla and was the only one who had shown up for the Molalla class) critcized me roundly when I told her I wasn't teaching any more for financial reasons. "Why didn't you say something?!" she demanded. "We could have all chipped in a dollar for gas money! Or I could just drive you myself, actually..."
Saturday morning I taught English class at Oregon City. Maria drove me there, and said she would gladly continue to do so for the rest of the term (we're all taking August off). So now not only is God pretty much throwing money at me this week, but he's also lowering my expenses.
And apparently he wasn't even done yet. This evening (Sunday) as I was getting ready to leave to go to evening service, it dawned on me that I had not checked the mail on Saturday. So I meandered over to the office where the mailboxes are and surprise! One thing in my mail box (I usually don't get mail) - a letter from my grandparents. Inside the letter was a check for $150 and a note explaining that they did not want to be paid back... they had just heard (probably via my mom) that money was tight and they "wanted to make sure I was all right".
So tonight after the Chamaco was in bed, I sat down to pay some bills that weren't even overdue yet (I still have 3 days, even), and a verse kept popping into my head. I'm fantastic at remembering general verse content, but I never know where the verses are actually found so I had to look it up...
"Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you." - Luke 6:38 (NIV)
Yeah, that sounds about like my week.