This morning I picked up our car after it had the serpentine belt, water pump and radiator replaced. The damage to my wallet?
When I was a missionary I sometimes wondered how God would provide for people who had steady paychecks. You have to understand, I was always reliant on financial support of others as a missionary. Some missionaries saw it as a badge of honor that they didn’t have a steady source of income and instead “relied on God” for everything. (Spiritual pride? In some cases, yes.) While I had a handful of committed monthly supporters, I usually found myself praying for finances and provision just to meet basic needs. This happened moreso when I got married to Jana. I became accustomed to God providing finances and things we needed, almost on a weekly basis, because of our “salary”. And, thus it became hard for me to understand how God could provide for those who were provided for already by a consistent salary.
This past year, I’ve understood how God can provide for those that do have salaries. I’m sure like many, Jana and I usually pray for provision for our needs and wants. Of course, we give and do our part to help others. However, since we are a single income family, there are moments where it can be tight financially.
I think it was March when I received a call from Wells Fargo out of the blue. They wanted to offer me an opportunity to refinance my home loan. This surprised me since Jana and I had just refinanced a new loan a year earlier. However, because we did that loan a year earlier, our previous solid credit rating improved even more. This qualified us for new refinancing that ultimately would drop our interest rate over 3% points.
How is this provision? Over the course of paying off the loan, how many thousands of dollars do we save by dropping the interest rate over three points? Besides, this new refinancing also reduces our monthly payments close to $200.
The process of refinancing did take a long time, six months long. However, earlier in the week I got the call that we would close on this Friday, October 9. I would have to bring $1800 to close. What happens? Well, Wednesday we have the issues with our car where the serpentine belt, water pump and radiator go out and all need to be replaced. In talking with people I fully expected the car repairs to easily top $1,000. Jana and I were praying and trying to figure out how much would be too much in making repairs on a 1992 automobile.
Thursday morning I got a call from the auto repair shop. The cost of the repairs? $500. Anywhere from a half to a third of the cost I, and others, expected. Jana and I saw it as an answer to prayer, the reduced cost of the repairs. Then, Friday morning I get a call from Wells Fargo and they inform me that the cash I need to bring to the refinancing closing is over $200 cheaper than originally expected. Provision on both of those fronts.
So, I now know, to a better degree, how God can provide in big ways to those of us that have consisent paychecks. Yes, people give baby/kids clothes, or meals, but the big money savings we had on these multiple fronts really taught a lesson to this former missionary about God’s continued provision.