The first of the month is looming, time to dive into the pile of bills on my desk, not my favorite task. Anxiety arises, wondering if the journey will be an uphill climb, relatively flat trek, or hopefully, a downhill, feet-off-the-pedals, ride.
My daily proverb read:
“Two things I ask of you, Lord; do not refuse me before I die: Keep falsehood and lies far from me; give me neither poverty nor riches, but give me only my daily bread. Otherwise, I may have too much and disown you and say, ‘Who is the Lord?’ Or I may become poor and steal, and so dishonor the name of my God.” Proverbs 30:7-9
We pray “Give us today our daily bread.” Matthew 6:11. No more, no less (a little more would be nice). My wavering faith had me wondering if the bread would leaven enough to make a larger loaf.
A devotional spoke of Peter paying the temple tax with a coin found in a fish’s mouth, after Jesus told him to cast his line.
“But so that we may not cause offense, go to the lake and throw out your line. Take the first fish you catch; open its mouth and you will find a four-drachma coin. Take it and give it to them for my tax and yours.” Matthew 17:27
I thought the point of this story was the miracle that, of all the fish he could have caught, he reeled in the one that had the exact amount they needed for the tax. (Scholars argue whether the fish had simply swallowed the shiny object, or the Lord made the coin appear there. Either way it was awesome.) The underlying point is that Peter did something unusual, at Jesus’ leading, without knowing the outcome, and the Lord provided. Therefore, continue to pursue where the Lord is leading, even if you can’t see it bearing fruit. The Lord will provide.
So I start the process of separating the few “ins” from all the “outs”. When I totaled them up, there was just enough month at the end of the money, except for one surprising need in the amount of $150. Well, I will have to be creative and something has to wait. Pondering my options, I opened the other miscellaneous mail that tends to overtake the mailbox. And there was an unexpected refund check for $150.05. Just the coin in the fish’s mouth I needed.
So everyone got paid with a nickel to spare. I did pray for my daily bread, no more, no less, and that a little more would be nice. And a little more was given. Nice. I am grateful and blessed. And if you look at that nickel, it says “In God We Trust”. I don’t trust Him as much as I should, but a nickel’s worth of grace was a great reminder.
Whether it’s five cents or five million,
Be grateful with what God provides
And Be Blessed in Great Measure
There are 31 proverbs. There are between 28 and 31 days in a month. On whatever day of the month it is, the correlating Proverb is your reading for the day.
Also, there are 150 Psalms, roughly 5 for each day. Take the day of the month and multiply by 5. That and the previous 4 Psalms are your Psalms reading.
1st of the month – Proverbs 1, Psalm 1-5
10th day – Proverbs 10, Psalm 46-50
20th day – Proverbs 20, Psalm 96-100
After a few months it may seem repetitive, but there is wisdom, truth and blessing in each and it opens your heart and mind to hear what the Lord is saying just when you need to hear it.