06 October, 2010

Who do you trust?

A subject that is continually on my heart and has been for years. What happens when someone throws "caution" out the door and truly lives by faith? What does living by faith mean? I'm not talking about wild spending because we "trust in God to provide" but i'm talking about something completely different. I read these stories, such as George Muller, who lived completely by faith, not even always knowing where the next meal would come from. Imagine......empty cupboards, empty kettles, empty hands....and yet God always provided. And down through the years my heart has longed to have a faith like that. I have no desire for empty cupboards, but i long for a radical faith, a trust so sweet that even a shaky economy can't shake. So living on the farm has given Marlin and i many chances to stretch our faith and through that we've had many long talks. Is insurance the only way to go? Is "christianity" right when it says you MUST prepare for retirement? Is retirement even biblical? What about saving accounts? Social security? Government handouts? If Jesus was serious when he told that rich young man to sell all he had and give to the poor, what on earth was that young man supposed to live on? Yes, i know that Jesus was driving a point home about that young man's heart, but could there possibly be a principle that Jesus was also trying to get across? I don't have all the answers and i believe God can even use government handouts for his glory. After all, he is GOD! And that's the very same God that tells us not to worry about tomorrow, what we will eat or drink or what we should wear. Kind of goes against our modern day teaching that we need to place safety nets all around and under us. I don't know, deep in my heart i feel a pull, a pull towards not only radical obedience, but a pull towards radical faith in every area, including financial. I know the shaky economy is enough to drive fear into our hearts, and yet i'm not sure that a fallen economy would be the worst thing that could happen to the church. What kingdom are we serving? Am i willing to sell all and give to the poor? To trust God for even my next meal? O! that God would do such a work in our hearts that even in desperate times His light would shine gloriously through us! I stand here in need of that work......

Edited to add: I just wanted to put in here that we are not against insurance, especially programs like Samaritan ministries. We have been hugely blessed through them and think it's a beautiful thing. I believe from the bottom of my heart that each couple must seek God for what He wants for them and that may very well look different for each family. We went through a tough time when we didn't have insurance and Joshua became deathly ill. We almost lost him (he was 8 months and had RSV) and we had NO clue how we were going to pay that hospital bill for 5 days, including a $3,000 ambulance bill. To this day we don't know who stepped in, but that bill is paid in full. The fact is, sometimes a person simply can't afford even the lowest premiums and that's where the test lies. That's where each family needs to seek God's heart in a personal way. I wonder sometimes how often we rob God of the joy of miraculously meeting a need.........


  1. AMEN, me too~~Pauline

  2. Darla my dear one...

    Yes and Amen! :) I think of when Jesus referred to the "poor in Spirit"...why did He use that word "poor?" Yet He called them "Blessed." There is a blessing of knowing with all confidence that all that you have is from God...truly from God. And I do think that He can provide in many, many ways. In fact through the years, the ways that He has provided has blown me away to be honest. Not always in the neat little package that I expected. :)

    A few weeks ago, I was listening to Otto Koning's teachings. The Pineapple Story series....incredible insights this man has!! One thing that has really tugged at me over and over again is the thought that we should avoid any kind of insurance on things as much as possible. His thinking was from the study of Job. Otto Koning believes/teaches that if we have insurance on "things", since this is usually the first area that God will touch us in to get our attention, we won't feel His hand...so then God is in a way forced to move onto the next area...and that is our loved ones...and finally if we don't respond there, he gets us in our own personal health. Not sure how I feel about it all either...not totally anyway. Lots to think, ponder and pray about!

    Just like you expressed...I desire that real, solid, focused, intentional, radical and reckless abandon to JESUS and HIS truth. Pray for me in this, and you know as always I will be praying for you...

    You my peeps...
    Billie XO

  3. Darla,

    I can't tell anyone what to do, but i can say this. we have been living this way for a while now. (pretty much since I got pregnant with Ven). We have never had insurance, a safety net, a savings account... not b/c we were irresponsible, but b/c that's how it worked out for us. So we initially took that "leap of faith" and it was hard. What you read seems fun and fulfilling, but you know what else it is? scary! disconcerting! CONSTANTLY stretching your faith! pushing you to face your worst enemies and worst fears time and time again. It is NOT always fun. I have cried so many many tears. in fact I have to admit, it's not a whole lot of fun. but what it is, is far better than fun - it's worthwhile. it's obedient. and it's a gateway to let the blessings of God flow into your life. and God WANTS to bless us. in fact I'm convinced He created us just so he'd have something to bless :)

    We don't own a farm, but moving our family away from the security we had known in Maryland to PA and then soon after to VA... it was so scary. I mean when is the train gonna stop cuz I gotta puke, kinda scary. But I would never ever go back. The faith I have in God, and the blessings He has given us (since we stuck it out long enough to see them!) are so fulfilling on a spiritual level that you find yourself with less material needs, if that makes sense.

    My heart is with you all while you are on this new page in life. This seems to be for now you're place where God wants you. I guarantee there is no better place to be. When we live with bare cupboards (so they say) we are more likely to look to god for provision - and He can shine!

    I could spend a yr solid writing out all the unique blessings God has given us since leaving Maryland. he has met our needs in so many unique and supernatural ways. (of course He has also said "no" very firmly to some things I had previously thought of as "needs"!)

    So I'm babbling, but what I want to say in essence, if you lean into Him and just enjoy the ride you won't always like where it takes you, but you will always have God in control, and that to me is far better than being alone in a wonderland. Keep your heart soft and the Almighty will lead you to unexpected place, and up difficult mountains, and through beautiful meadows. I promise you, it is a wonderful journey.

    God Bless your family!

  4. p.s. I forgot to add, I have nothing against insurance nor any other medium which one can use to their benefit, I am only against one using those things and truly thinking their security is in them. Every family is going to have different circumstances. I do however think that most insurance companies end up receiving a LOT of money from people and often denying them the right to us it when they are truly ill. So personally I don't like the corruption of the companies... but that is sorta a different issue.

  5. Hi Darla:

    My ten years as a single mom of 4 kids and running a seamstress business from my home was the best time of my life. I brought in $600 a month, cooked from scratch, lived far away in Iowa while my parents and siblings lived in San Diego - I had no one to fall back on or help me when times were tough.

    God always provided, though. I did not have health insurance and we fell between the cracks of government handouts so was not able to receive any (I either made too little or too much, go figure).

    Sometimes I had a car that worked, and we lived in a small town with just a gas station, we had to travel at least 8 miles to the nearest grocery store.

    But God always provided. And those days of struggle really were the best days of my life. They are when I grew/matured the most.

    Last Tuesday afternoon (September 28th) I had two consecutive sharp chest pains, so went to the emergency room. After two days of tests, the surgeon came into my hospital room and said he was going to do gallbladder surgery in 2 to 4 hours and I told him my fear of anethesia.

    A DEEP fear of anesthesia.

    He talked to me and I thought I had 2 to 4 hours to get used to the idea.

    15 minutes after the surgeon left my room, the nurse came into my room and said they were doing the surgery NOW!

    My fear of anesthesia was still there. I had to put all of my trust right then and there into God's hands. Complete trust. All the way down to the surgical ward I kept repeating to myself "I trust you Jesus, I trust you Jesus" and singing hymns in my head because if I thought about the anesthesia that I had to have in a few minutes, I would've gone nuts. (believe me, I already requested just a local from the surgeon -- I was laughed at).

    Today I am feeling so much better. Funny how years of nausea and chronic 'just-not-feeling-good', sharp chest pains and chronic back pains all came from that gallbladder.

    On Monday the 27th I had prayed asking God to help me feel better, I was sick and tired of being sick and tired, and why was I always feeling that way?

    God answered my prayer by sending me to the hospital the very next day, and then before I could whimp out on the surgery that would make me feel better, He made me put my 100% trust in Him by not giving me a chance to even think about the surgery.

    So today I not only am feeling so much better physically, but spiritually I am feeling better than I have felt in years also.

    I feel like I conquered that trust mountain that you are staring at, Darla. I have always wondered how these great people we read about just put their complete trust in God, too.

    It is funny/amazing how God grabs our attention and gives us the opportunity to completely, 100%, no backing out, don't even think or worry about the circumstances -- trust in Him.

    Just thought I would share what Trusting God means to me now!

    God is ALWAYS in control!

    Blessings from San Diego:

    Donna -- p.s. also learned last week that diseased gallbladders will mimic heart attack symptoms. I never knew that.....

  6. Thank you friends! You know, we've been stretched before, to the point where we literally couldn't pay bills, unfortunately due to consumer debt. Praise God, we're free from that, but it's still a complete walk of faith, but as i walk, having NO control over circumstances whatsoever (and how us women like control!), i am discovering a glorious freedom. Ah, that i would truly learn and grow and that our children would look to God and God alone.
    Speaking of children, Zac, who's 7, freely prays in front of people that God would help us to make the farm payments. I don't know that we've even discussed it in front of him, except to explain to the kids that we won't have any extra money cause of the farm. Children are awesome and i am learning so much from my own.

    Laura, good to hear from you! We haven't forgotten the LaFianza's. :)

    Donna, it sounds like you have been through a lot, and yet like you say, God is in control. Praising God with you.

    Love, Darla


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