The rest of the picture (addendum to the last post), the other side of God’s gold coin of provision:

Relinquish the Blessing?

Yes, Jesus showed up right after Peter, Andrew, James, and John had finished a miserably unsuccessful worknight of fishing, and directed a catch so big it broke their nets and nearly sank their boats (Lk 5:4-9). But then what did He do (Mk 1:17-18)? He told them to leave all that abundance and follow Him.

What did He tell the rich young ruler (Lk 18:22), and Matthew the tax collector (Lk 5:27-28), and countless others to do? Same thing.

Provision and Need

Later, when they needed the money to pay the temple tax, Jesus told Peter to catch just one fish and look in its mouth. He did, and there was the cash! (Mt. 17:24-27).

God was still providing, right when they needed it, and for His purposes, but He wasn’t giving them palaces or bulging wardrobes, or bags full of gold. At one point He sent them out without even an extra tunic or any money (lk 9:2-3). They were to carry out their mission all on trust.

That’s the point. We can always trust God to supply our needs for whatever role He has foreordained.

My Own Experience

The private school position in which God put me required a certain wardrobe, and that’s what He provided. It required a place to live in a new area, and transportation for the long term, for many purposes, and so He provided.

He also threw in some wonderful surprises to show how able He is to provide abundantly, but that didn’t mean my assignment in life was to luxuriate in material riches. Fact is, I haven’t owned a brand new car since that time–nearly thirty years ago. Since then, also, God has ably clothed me, but not with the same kind of wardrobe, because right now I don’t need it. And so on.

Seek First…

If we seek God’s kingdom and His righteousness, He promises to meet all our needs, and for the purposes He has laid out for us–not for whims we whine for. If He does answer our whiney prayers as He did with the Egypt escapees in the wilderness (Num 11:4-20), later we may bitterly regret that we ever asked.

His purpose is not to make us filthy rich and disgustingly self-indulgent, but to know Him better, to trust Him more, and to willingly lay down the earthly blessings for the greater blessing of walking with Him more intimately, going where He leads and doing what He wills. This is the full and abundant life, far outshining all the material surprises He could spring on us.