Scripture tells us in Philippians 4:6: Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.
Let’s be clear about one thing: God knows better than I do what I need and how best to deliver it. Yet, I’ve learned over the years that specificity in prayers is something that is bolsters my faith. Even though He knows better than we do what we need, I think one of the reasons He tells us to pray confidently and specifically is so we can see the evidence first-hand that He hears and answers. In other words, ask, seek, and knock.
One family story that continues to bolster our faith, and encourage others, occurred years ago when we had locked our keys in our car. Despite considerable attempts by a locksmith, we were not making progress, and I had an appointment to keep. I said to my husband and the locksmith, “I’m going to ask God to send us a car thief!” Both sneered at my remark, but within an hour, a man, who looked every bit like a gang member, came up to us and said, “Let me show you how we do this on the east-side.” Within thirty seconds he had opened the door! God had indeed sent us a car thief!
Yesterday, we had another example of God answering specific prayers. It had to do with selling one of our cars. This vehicle for sale was my husband’s car that he had driven for over thirteen years. He loved his car and was having some “separation anxiety” about letting it go. It still ran well, but I had been after him for quite some time to get into a bigger car. This car had some “issues” that, although not serious, were not going to be easy to explain to someone, who did not already know us and trust us. I was very eager to see this car sold because we had already purchased another, and we were storing the car for sale in the garage. Frankly, I wanted my garage back! I prayed specifically that God would bring good people our way, so that my husband would feel better about selling it and having it go to a good home.
We advertised our vehicle on social media, Craigslist, and other car selling sites, along with letting friends know that we were eager to sell it before the registration would come due in a month. While we had a few inquiries, we weren’t seeing serious prospects. And although it hadn’t been listed for very long, I was getting impatient. Finally, I received an email from a woman who had seen our classified on a neighborhood email service. She wanted to come and see the car that evening. From the time I opened the door and saw a young girl and her parents, I sensed, these are the new owners.
We took them to the garage and my husband immediately shared with the dad the “issues” that we felt obliged to disclose. The man was not worried as he was very familiar with this brand of car and felt like it was of minor concern. The car was for the daughter who seemed to like every aspect of it, as did her mom. They agreed to come back the next day and purchase it. When they left, I told my husband, “I bet you anything that family homeschooled!” He asked me why. “It was the way the family interacted with each other and the fact that the girl looked me right in the eye.” I know this sounds strange, but many relate that this is a defining characteristic of young people who have been homeschooled.
The next day while we made the transfer of title and completed the sale, we discovered that, not only were they a homeschooling family, but that we shared a common faith in Jesus Christ. As it turns out, they live about five minutes away from us! Remarkable providences indeed! Before they left, I handed them two of my published books The Homeschool Life: Discovering God’s Way to Family-based Education and A House for God:Building a Kingdom-Driven Family, along a vocal CD, The Road that Takes Me Home, and a recent recording in tribute to R. J. Rushdoony with selections from the book, The Luxury of Words.
Later that evening, I received an email from the woman thanking me for selling them our car and for the “gifts” I had sent. She singled out the “Rushdoony CD” (which surprised me) and informed me that we had left some clothing items in the car. We went to their home to retrieve them, only to discover that God’s remarkable providences were not over. As it turns out, the woman was very familiar and appreciative of Rushdoony’s writings, lectures, and the ministry he founded, Chalcedon. Imagine her surprise when I informed her that I have worked for Chalcedon for the past twenty-five years. What’s more, they had only recently moved to the neighborhood, and were praying to be in touch with like-minded believers. We were all praising God for His faithfulness. Each family had its prayers answered. This brings new light to the passage: Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us (Eph. 3:20).
God did more than we asked or imagined. We sold our car. It went to a family who appreciated it. The light of Christ was evident in this family, and we have made new friends and neighbors. In addition, we have another story to share of God’s remarkable providences, and the grace that becomes evident when we make our requests known to Him.
As the song* goes,
Our God is an awesome God
He reigns from heaven above
With wisdom, power, and love
Our God is an awesome God!