Lela noticed Robert fiddling with the silver dollars in his pocket. He had just been paid for the month, and he had that “look” in his eyes. She had seen it in the past. Knowing this man who kept his ears open to hearing directives from God, she knew it would be “seed planting time” again.
Sowing money was always hard on the flesh, but if the couple knows anything, it is that you cannot get a harvest without planting the seed. Lela did not know how much would be required this time.
It was a beautiful Sunday morning in 1919. The young couple had just had their first child, and Robert had a job hauling wheat. They were better off than many, but still counting every penny.
Today the church is receiving donations for a building fund. As they are leaving the church, Robert turns and looks deep into the beautiful brown eyes he loves so well.
“God told me to give all I have,” he whispers softly.
She catches her breath.
“But honey, do you realize that’s all we have until you haul more wheat?”
Her mind is going in all different directions, from how will we pay bills, to what will we eat. These are all honorable questions, but God has a different answer.
When Robert hauls wheat, he always deducts a little from his pay for the wheat that blows off of the truck while on route. He is told that it happens to everyone, but he says, “No, I don’t want to be paid for something I didn’t earn.”
He has become known as “Honest Okie” because he is from Oklahoma. Everyone knows without a shadow of a doubt that they will get a square deal from this honest man. He was rare then, and would nearly be an extinct species in our modern times.
As the congregation files out of the church, Robert reaches into his pocket and takes out every last silver dollar. He places it all in the offering plate.
Lela releases a breath of expectancy as she sees the dollars leave Robert’s hand. She knows she must now rely on not what they have, but what is in God’s hand.
Unknown to Robert, Mr. James, the man who stood by the door and received the contributions was an officer in the town bank. The next morning, the bank was looking for someone to fill a position. They wanted someone honest.
Mr. James was praying, trying to think of someone -- someone who was a good man, full of integrity and honest. “Lord, You know there are so many who need this position, but there is one special person who would be perfect for us. Show me that man.”
He no sooner got the words out than he saw a face. It was Robert. He was all excited.
“I know! I know the very man we want. I don’t know his name, but I know he is called, Honest Okie. I wonder if the pastor can shed some light as to where I can find this man.”
Searching him out, they offered him a job that day as Commission Agent for Magnolia Petroleum. They paid him $3000 a month which was practically unheard of in those days. Robert stayed with what later became Mobilgas Corporation until he retired.
Robert and Lela knew the secret as they had seen it work well in their individual families and knew it would work for them too. Matthew 6:33 was on the lips of Robert and Lela continually. It says, “Seek ye first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things will be added unto you.” (NKJV)
It was one of the first things they taught their ever growing family as they grew up -- “First things first.” We all knew what that meant, and as we follow that advice, it works well for us too.
This is a true story.
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