A story of generosity, risk, and miracles.
By Nathan Banker
I have tried out the “tent making” method at different times over the years. It’s a ministry strategy where you make your living through a “normal” job while doing ministry with your spare time. I have some really marketable skills thanks to years of destroying my body day after day pounding nails, welding steel and stacking blocks.
“God is preparing me, today, for a tomorrow that I can’t see yet.”
I have had some awesome friends who are more than willing to throw me a side job here and there in between sessions of Prayer Resolution, leading our Immerse Community, and mentoring individuals (while drinking really good coffee) . It has been a great way to make a buck, stay in shape and keep my skills honed. All the while God has been very clear to me that He has called me to be a minister, not a carpenter (a very godly trade, I might add).
A few years ago some friends of mine moved into a new house where they were practicing some really cool community living. They asked me to build a custom desk for their study. I showed up that Saturday morning ready to roll. It always amazes me how many tools are needed for one little project like this. In spite of the very cold rain that interrupted me at midday, I finished it like a boss.
The section in front of the closet is hinged, which I think is pretty fun. Gotta get to that closet!
That night I sent them a receipt for the labor and material. I had put 10 hours of work into it from design to completion. As I was going to bed, however, I started getting the impression (Michelle helped me figure this out) that God was saying, “Don’t charge them for labor.” In fact, as I slept that night I kept waking up thinking about it. I remember thinking, “I should just get up and send an email telling them they don’t have to pay for the labor. Maybe I could finally get some sleep without God waking me up every other hour!”
By the morning I felt like God had clarified the message and told me, “I will pay you for the labor.” I sent the email. I wasn’t sure it was God. It was mostly just a vague impression or random thought that didn’t want to go away. But, I’ve learned to trust that annoying nudge. In the end, God isn’t going to fail to provide for me because I was too darn generous and willing to help some people out in my community. God’s resources are unlimited! I’m always as rich as all the promises of God.
"Don’t lose heart when you see the numbers. There’s no measure for the faith we bring." -Josh Garrels, Rise
So, I stood on the fact that my Heavenly Papa is really good at taking care of His kids (me and my family).
It was Sunday morning and we went to church. I was talking to a guy who was interested in joining Immerse. I reached into my bag to grab a brochure for him. There I found an envelope addressed to Michelle and I. Someone had slipped it in my bag without me knowing it.
As you might guess from the fact that this is blog-worthy, it was a quite a bit more than the $300 of labor for the desk. My God is alive and well. He knows my needs and will not fail to take care of His kids. He hears prayers and is powerful to respond.
I don’t know how long that envelope had been in my bag - it could have been a few weeks - but I didn’t see it until the morning I had given away a $300 gift. I hope whoever gave us that money reads this and is encouraged! You are hearing correctly and He is really leading you.
I’m starting to learn how to trust Him.