It started with the garden.
Long before we had the fence up my husband called me on his way to work.
“Honey, there’s a pile of chips on the side of the road, some trucker was over weight. Can you and the kids get in the truck and load some up?”
Not being as familiar with that road, I questioned him where it was and then we loaded the truck with shovels, a couple moving blankets, and ourselves.
The pile was easy to find and huge.
We worked together to get a load of wood chips and by the time we were finished I was exhausted.
As I drove towards home I began to pray for energy, fully intending to get a second load, as one wouldn’t be enough.
Don’t be greedy.
The Lord’s words to my heart surprised me.
“Lord, we need more than one load for the garden, what am I supposed to do?”
This wasn’t an easy thing to hear, because I had never thought of greed as being applied to this type of circumstance.
Yet, I knew the Lord had spoken clearly to my heart that I wasn’t to return and get more chips.
I often pondered this circumstance, trying to find a better understanding of the sin of greed, because obviously my definition was wrong.
I’d always thought of greed as wanting more and more when one has plenty, like King Solomon.
But I began to realize the Lord was showing me that greed is taking what God hasn’t given me.
Just because it’s available, doesn’t mean God is giving it to me.
He brought to mind something I saw many years ago.
I’d been praying for something I needed and couldn’t afford.
My heart felt certain that God would provide.
Then, I was sitting in church and the announcements included a donation of several boxes of the item I’d been praying for. They were sitting by the front doors for anyone who needed them.
I praised God!
He’d supplied my need and I waited for the break to be announced, so I could go look at the donation.
As I walked toward the area, my eyes were enjoying the beautiful weather outside when I suddenly noticed a person from our fellowship.
Their arms were full of boxes as they crossed the parking lot and when I reached the front door it was bare.
Although, I was disappointed at the time, God supplied the need a different way.
Just recently, our church announced that two boxes of bare root strawberries had been donated.
My husband was going to get us some, as we had the place for them, but hadn’t had a chance to buy any yet, I had been given seeds, but not in time to start them in doors.
When he went to where the strawberry plants were he saw that both boxes had been taken by one person.
God worked through these two circumstances to speak directly to my heart about greed.
God has a plan to supply what is lacking in my life, but He wants me to look to Him for those things, not to try to “protect myself”, to fix the problem on my own through hording or robbing someone else of a blessing through taking more than He’s telling me to.
“Lord, I still don’t understand, because we need more chips in the garden.”
Then it hit me, I don’t need wood chips in the garden, I want them.
I want to keep it tidy and not to have to deal with weeds, but it’s not a need.
The Lord has shown me, I often misunderstand what a need is and label wants incorrectly.
Because God supplies all my needs, I can wait upon Him to both show me the difference between the two and I can trust Him to provide as He chooses when He chooses.
This is where my faith is grown, by waiting upon the Lord.
He supplies in ways which often surprise me, like the strawberry patch.
My husband had heard our pastor’s wife was cleaning out her strawberry patch and made a call offering to buy the plants she no longer has space for.
Since he’d only left a message I was surprised to see our pastor at our house the next day with a box of bare root strawberries, which he refused payment for.
Not only that, he carried them to the garden, said he could supply more if this wasn’t enough, and chatted while I planted.
Yesterday, I was blessed by this:
Although our garden still has bare dirt for part of the path, I’m waiting upon the Lord for His plan and thanking Him for what He’s given.
The wood chips have been a double blessing, because the lesson I’m learning about greed is far more valuable then a tidy garden.
I praise God for His Sovereignty in knowing I actually needed less so I would learn more.
Philippians 4:19 KJV — But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.
Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank You for Your Word. Thank You for Your faithfulness. Lord Jesus, I praise You, for You have used so much in my life to teach me about You and about me. Lord, I am humbled and thankful to You for using something so insignificant as wood chips to show me an area I’m liable to fall into sin. Lord, thank You for protecting me from the sin of greed, by showing me my false thinking about what greed really is. Lord, please continue to help me to understand how to wait upon You, how to know the difference between a want and a need, how to be generous and think of others, not just myself. Lord, please continue to teach me how to guard against greed and covetousness. Please bring my heart to attend to Your Word, that I might not sin against You. Thank You, Lord. Amen.