What We Find when We Aren’t Looking

Sep 7, 2017 by

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I’ve learned that the worst possible time to shop is when I am looking for something specific, particularly if I need it by the next day.

When I needed a jewel toned top the first time I sang with the worship team, all my sister Kristy and I could find were pastels and earth tones. You’d think every worship director in the East Bay had called for the same color palette. We finally gave up and found something in my closet that went back to my Reno days. Thankfully, my black peasant skirt and the right jewelry can dress up anything.

The worst possible time to shop is when I am looking for something specific. Click To Tweet

Two weeks later, while browsing in a store for nothing in particular, we found jewel tones on every rack. The next time I was scheduled to sing, I had a darling new turquoise top.

“I’ll find it when I’m not looking for it” are my famous last words while shopping. The statement doubles as a reminder that if I really need something, or at least want it for a good reason (how often do I truly NEED a new outfit in the same way that someone who doesn’t have clothes needs one?), God will provide it, usually when I least expect it.

He did exactly that last week.

I’d been looking for a bookshelf to display my collection of Grandma’s books on since I cleared out my storage unit in the summer of 2014. I didn’t want any old generic shelf from Target; I wanted something cute that would fit in a certain corner of my bedroom. I’d walked away from many searches in Ikea and consignment stores disappointed, until I finally decided that the secret to finding one would be to stop looking for a bookshelf. I was bound to find what I wanted while shopping for a birthday card or the one item on Nathan’s school supply list that every store had run out of.

On Thursday afternoon, Kristy sent me a text from a consignment store that she and Mom and Dad happened to pop into.

“Look what I found!”

She’d attached a picture of—you guessed it—a bookshelf. It was tall, cute, and under my budget.

“Dad said he would buy it and you can pay him back.”

That evening, Dad brought my bookshelf home in two pieces. Putting them together revealed that the shelf had some issues (we should get along very well), so it wasn’t exactly perfect. But look at it now!

Once I’d filled it with Grandma’s books, some special knickknacks, a few things that had been cluttering up my room, and Anne of Green Gables, it looked like exactly what I’d hoped for.

I am convinced that God knew this needed to be a family find, where Kristy saw what I’d been looking for, Dad brought it home, and my parents and I put it together along with Nathan and his cousin Dylan. I found out later that Kristy spotted it in the same store that cruelly rejected my wedding ring—which I’d hung onto for much longer than most women in my situation would have—as if it were a piece of junk from a gumball machine. Maybe God wanted to redeem that place in my eyes.

He doesn’t only provide what we need when we least expect it, but He knows how, when, and where we need to find it.

What have you given up on getting? How can memories of “I’d stopped looking for this” provisions help you trust Him for it?

What have you given up on getting? Click To Tweet

And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.

Philippians 4:19 (NIV)

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  1. Suzette

    I have given up trying to “find” a future husband and am trusting God to bring him to me in his timing!

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