Psalm 37:4 “Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.”
I truly believe God is pleased by those who delight in Him. From the moment I first prayed with Nick on July 11, 2021, God has delighted in our union, watching us grow in faith together. After all, God had orchestrated our meeting, guiding me to pray in the summer of 2018 for a man I did not yet know, and then making it clear that Nick was that man when I finally met him three years later. (When God Writes the Love Story)
God has been gladdened by our daily prayer time, our bible studies, our commitment to HIM. He has delighted in our travel this past year and the tears I’ve shed at the beauty of His nature. How can anyone view a mountain or an ocean and not be in awe of God’s creation?
I’m not sure my dear husband quite “gets” my obsession with secondhand stores, though he has observed how my prayer life extends even to thrift shopping. Before we were married, I’d gotten as far as adding the red plates and bowls I wanted for our first home to my online Kohls cart before hesitating at the hefty price tag.
“I have a strong feeling I’m not to purchase them new,” I told Nick later that day. “And that we should check out Stuff.” (a local consignment store) Once there, I headed directly to the household section, where I immediately spotted them: a stack of six red plates and bowls. I purchased all twelve for less than the price of one new plate. Coincidence? Synchronicity? Or do we have a God who actually cares about His daughter’s delight? Don’t we as parents search for the perfect gift for our child, then revel in their joy when we’ve accomplished that purpose?
No one needs a leather jacket, it’s true. But I did want one when I saw my husband’s. Sharing my desire and the “thrill of the hunt” for a good deal with Nick, I began searching the racks at various thrift and consignment stores. Within a week, I found the perfect one, brand-new, with tags still attached, for a mere $25. After my credit at the store, I didn’t pay a penny. Neither did I need a colorful trunk to hold all my creativity workshop materials, but I like to think that God had something to do with me finding this brand-new trunk at the same consignment store. I’m convinced Our Father delights in my enjoyment of these things.
This is how God works in my life ever since I developed a personal relationship with Him in 2012. It should have come as no surprise then, when I told my husband to postpone purchasing some salt and pepper and parmesan cheese shakers for his business because God would help me find some that my next visit to the consignment store, I actually did.
And yet, I was surprised. In fact, I may have gasped in awe when I spotted two new packages of parmesan cheese shakers and a new package of glass salt and pepper shakers. I mean, come on, what are the odds? Within a day or two of confidently assuring my husband God would provide those items, He did. Not only that, but my Goodwill stop netted the exact type of backpack my husband had suggested I get for our future trips, in lieu of carrying a purse. One of my favorite brands, and in my signature leopard print! A Relic backpack for $6.00? The stationery sets and leather book of prayers for my husband were just icing on the cake. Not pictured are several items I purchased for Christmas gifts.
This doesn’t mean I get everything I want, any more than we as parents should fulfill our child’s every desire. But it does mean that because I am open to God’s guidance, sometimes I feel led by the Spirit to stop at a certain store, pick up a particular book, or reach out to a perfect stranger.
And sometimes, God surprises me with more than I ever hoped for or imagined. Like Nick.
5 thoughts on “Finding God in Goodwill”
Mary, you are such fun!
I attest to this. I have 5 kids. Years ago, my daughter and I went out garage saling with $5!! We came home with a mini van FULL of clothes and toys and goods for the family and to give away! Praise the Lord!
Aren’t you happy when you find a “Good deal” at a thrift store !!!
Awe, this is story is filled with infectious cheer!
Oh Mary, I remember when I first met you at a Cedar Falls seminar. You were worried and full of pain from recent losses. It’s so wonderful to see you full of joy and beaming at your new hubby. You are a dear, dear soul. Peace, Clare
Clare Bills Nearly Normal Writer Author of Mountains of Trouble and Mending Helen’s Heart http://www.clarebills.com ________________________________