God knew I was young, nineteen, with two kids going to school full time, me, not them. My only income was from my dad's G.I bill (which allowed him to send two dependents to school, providing me with $211 a month), $100 child support check and whatever schools grant money I had left over after purchasing books and paying tuition. With $311 monthly I paid rent, utilities included,(don't envision something fancy for $120 monthly, though the roaches I shared the accommodations with thought they were in roach heaven), bought groceries, with the temporary help of food stamps,(they embarrassed me so I eventually weaned myself from them), gas for my $10 car,(bet you can't find one like that anymore, simply because that one caught on fire on my way to school one day.),nice fairly elaborate Christmas and birthday splashes for my kids, (guilt relief for them having to struggle through school with me), with enough left over for a small savings account. This was in the late '70's. I doubt this could be achieved today. Car insurance was not required back then so that was a tremendous savings. I also had wonderful parents who did free babysitting, picked my food up at the commissary on base for an added savings, and they threw in unsolicited butt kicking whenever I got discouraged and threatened to quit school.
You can see how every cent counted in my household. One afternoon a few days after I received my child support check I puttered out to the bank in my lovely car (sarcasm, did you catch it?), to discover I was check-less. I went back home and turned over ever leaf as I looked for that important piece of bank paper valued at a meager $100.00. I opened every school book, emptied every dresser drawer, dumped the trash on the floor, (the roaches appreciated that, it was like take-out for them), scrounged through the toy chests, and then stuck my hand in every shirt, skirt and pants pocket that hung in my closet or was stuffed in my hamper. I was devastated. No check. I was on the verge of some heavy crying.
That night I went to bible study and asked for prayers. Suggestions galore rolled off every tongue, (but no love offerings in the way of hard cash). I got free advice and many suggestions on where to continue my search, none of which panned out when I got home. Finally the obvious reaction came from the group. "Don't worry, God knows where it is." Nice sentiment from people who didn't need $100 as badly as I did. God definitely didn't need it, so why wouldn't he share his knowledge with me!!! He owned the cattle on a thousand hills, at least give me something for my money: a brisket, roast, a hundred pounds of hamburger meat.
Weeks went by and I gave up the hunt. The check was hopelessly lost. I would make do, after all God had taught me he would meet my needs even if he did hide my money. I pillaged from my savings and continued living on a shoestring, which is pretty tasty with sufficient Italian sauces and spices. Good for roughage.
One sleepless night after studying for one of my finals I picked up some light reading and fluffed my pillows. I stretched, yawned, leaned back, and opened my book. Something fluttered to the bed covers. Thinking it was just scratch paper I crunched it up and tossed it into the wastebasket across the room....then on after thought I flew after it. Guess what it was; yep, my check. All wrinkled but still cashable. The light reading? My bible. It had been a light for my path for many years and now it was still shining forth with help and wisdom and releasing its bounty. I'd been reading this book regularly over the past few weeks yet God choose his perfect time for the check to dislodge from whatever pages it was stuck between. I now remembered why I placed it there when I had received it, to keep it secure till I made it to the bank. My prayer group was correct. God did know where the errant check was. He revealed it to me only after reminding me he was my sufficiency. I informed him I learned my lesson and he didn't need to repeat the question on the final exam.
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