Friday, November 28, 2008

Irregular paychecks!

Having a regular paycheck or even a regular pay day has many benefits.... More than I ever realized, frankly. However, having irregular paychecks can teach so much as well. Like depending on God to provide above all!

At one time, we had a 'yearly' salary along with some quarterly payments as well. That was tough to keep to a budget, but still easy.

Knowing when a paycheck would come, made it easier to plan and budget. It gave a sense of security.

Then the yearly payment was done away with and the quarterly payments became more and more irregular, for many reasons. Sometimes we were even told "I don't have money to pay you right now", which we understood but the 'ouch' would come when we heard they were doing something elaborate with their finances.

But, for the last couple of years, the Lord has brought us to quite a different place. It is a place that we couldn't be at except for it being the harder road. This road requires faith and dependence on Him, and no other -for provision. This road requires a blind faith sometimes. This road allows some room for worry or complete trust, whichever I choose. It has periods of drought and periods or rain.

But, it does teach so much! It teaches faith and faithfulness. It teaches mercy and God's timing is perfect. It teaches that God is our supply. It teaches our children to watch, trust, and wait! It also teaches all who are on this road the difference between 'want' and 'need'. It will make or break contentment. Miracles can be seen here as in no other place! Faith is built upon, or torn down. Again, my choice.

This road can have many emotions. Self-pity, which won't help a thing and in fact will make it worse. It can teach humility in a way that all the riches of the world can't touch. It can bring joy and peace, when there appears to be no reason for it! It can help you understand happiness in small things that riches can't teach because small things would be over-looked.

This road gives insight too. There are things and people that I could not understand at one time in my life that I can now fully comprehend their feelings and actions. Poverty and despair can be the best of friends and one can explain the other. This road can help explain what can happen to a person, especially without Christ, if financial security vanishes.

But this road can be a place where faith becomes sight! You can take your burden to the Lord and take His easy yoke. You can take a need to Him and wait and watch Him work in a way that you would never see any other way, because of so many distractions. You can draw close to Him here. You can also watch Him prove His love for YOUR children! You can learn that He loves them more than you could ever know! Some of the quickest prayers that I've ever had answered were needs for my kids. He has amazed me over and over!

This road can banish selfishness and cause you to become more selfless. As you see others great needs and often realize how small yours really are. You can fret about where next month's house payment is going to come from or you can chose to be grateful that you aren't looking at children who have been hungry for days as in the case of third world countries.

But on practical terms, what does this mean? Well, it means that sometimes an item stays on the 'need to buy list' for weeks, maybe even months. It also means when money comes in that the needs are taken care of then and everyone gets special blessings accordingly. One may need socks, one may need pants, and the others may not need anything but they all may get 2 or 3 dollars to spend at the Dollar Tree. (Or more or less, depending.) And what careful and frugal little shoppers come out of this! They have learned a little more about 'what they really want' when they have to reallllly wait! They are also very grateful and express their thankfulness OPENLY AND WITHOUT A PROMPT! It's so precious! They also understand how to 'make do'! They become creative in their ways of making things last or are just being more careful in their care of their things. They watch me do things and learn. My oldest said that he thought he could be self-sufficient if he had to...after watching me render (free) beef fat. I asked him to explain and by golly he did! They make up their own games and toys. I'm amazed at the creativity that I never knew was there until the last couple of years! Not that I didn't think they were smart, just that they've dreamed up so much! They will make game pieces and game boards out of notebook paper and play a game! They will make/draw their own coloring pages and print copies! They will try to talk me into planting almost anything just to see if it will produce something we can eat,lol! They've also learned to like simple things like Andy Griffith and The Walton's. They are very favored shows! I always hoped they would be and now they are!

Yes, this road is different but it has it's advantages if you keep the right perspective! That's been my biggest challenge on this road--ME! "Oh for grace, to trust Him more!" Blessed be our God!

4 comments:

Rona's Home Page said...

Happy Thanksgiving!

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for this post. It has come at exactly the right time for me and my family. I am a SAHM, we are expecting our third child in a few months and my husband was just laid off. We have always been frugal (so I love this site) and have been living from paycheck to paycheck for quite a time now. It has taught me the difference between want and need, to find joy in even the littlest of things, and to recognize God's hand in everything. Until recently, these lessons were known deeply by only myself and my children. My husband has slowly been beginning to walk with the Lord and I look forward to observing (and experiencing) the joy and blessings that come with total dependence on the Lord. I am truly blessed beyond earthly measure and can't wait for my husband to learn that his personal worth is much more than the numbers on a paycheck. I must confess that my heart breaks and tears have been shed when there are things that I just cannot give my children, or the mortgage is due and the checkbook register's $100, but EVERY time God has orchestrated a true miracle that I have been able to share with others. I love that although my husband has been laid off by his employer, he has been employed by our Lord the maker and provider off all good things. The training may not be easy, but the rewards are great!!! May God continue to bless and keep you and your family in the palm of His gentle loving hand.

Donna said...

Same to you and your family Rona!!! And thank you!

Anon,
Thank you for posting! It's good to know that there are others on this road. May the Lord continue to bring your family, right in the center of His will! His grace is sufficient!

Prudent Homemaker said...

The Lord knows our needs. As we do all that we can do, and strive to be good stewards over all that He has given to us, He truly has met our needs as well.

This month we had to choose whether to pay our tithing or ot pay our mortgage. We paid our tithing first, and watched the windows of heaven open as the Lord provided for us. He made it possible to pay our mortgage as well, and in some way increased our food storage every day. Today, I was brought more food by someone else. I have eggs! Paying our tithing is truly a blessing!