Many of you received my monthly update a few days ago via e-mail. The paper copy should be arriving, hopefully, by next week. It has already been sent off to those that edit, print and mail them for me at CTEN. (By the way, another plug, best sending organization EVER.)
In my update I spoke about how tight $ was this month. And when I say “tight” I actually mean that there really isn’t any money. Uggghhh. I usually have a reserve of sorts in case of higher bills, crappy exchange rates, what-not. The problem is that I got hit HARD with taxes this year. Had to shell out $1400 and then immediately send in my next quarterly payment of 2011 taxes of over $700. So, goodbye savings for emergencies. Then my gas bill estimation was regulated and it was almost $300. Final topping on whole situation being that when I got my donations on the 1st of May (from the month of April) there was only about 70% compared to what I normally get. This wouldn’t have been a problem, just tighten the belt until June’s deposit, had I the set aside monies for situations like these. Because of taxes and the gas bill, there. is. nothing. So, I’ve got a pretty significant problem on my hands. Caleb and Alex need their school fees paid for this month, my car insurance needs to be paid as well and – what broke my heart the most – I had no money whatsoever to buy the birthday supplies to celebrate the birthdays of the orphanage kids this week.
There are 4 people here from Sweden for a month, from a Bible School. We had previously planned that they would come with me to the orphanage each week. I have never asked an almost stranger to cover ministry costs for me on their first trip to said ministry, but I was desperate. “Would you guys be able to buy the soda/pop for the birthday parties this week? We need 9, 2 liters.” I apologized for asking them to chip in and, thankfully, they were very happy to help out! Blessing #1! As I was doing laundry, just before leaving, I found 30 Lei in the pocket of some shorts I had worn a few weeks back. The amount of the birthday cake supplies, plus cups and plates equaled EXACTLY 30 Lei at the store. Yay! Now 2 financial blessings for the birthday needs! I thought I had already bought the cake layers for the birthdays, yesterday we were celebrating 5 birthdays, and, therefore, didn’t worry about needing to purchase those. But then, we got to the orphanage and no cake layers were to be found. Dang it. I asked the guest with me how much they had on them. They had 7 Lei. I started digging in my purse…maybe I could find enough loose change to equal 7 Lei and then we could buy 2 cake layers at least? Digging around I found 100 Lei hidden behind a bunch of receipts in my envelope system wallet. I yelled out “AAGHGH! LOOK! YAY! PRAISE GOD!” All of us laughed; we were so happy! We were able to buy 3 cake layers, 2 of the birthday kids didn’t show up for their party, with funds to spare. Blessing #3.
On the drive home from the orphanage I started praying…”Lord, I know I have the change from the 100 but it’s not going to cover the ELEVEN (11!!) birthdays that we have to celebrate tomorrows. Please…” We arrived to our team house and unloaded the car of all the dirty bowls, candles etc… that we needed to have washed to reuse for today’s birthdays. When that was done I pulled together a quick supper for Caleb, and while doing so, one of the girls who had been at the orphanage with me earlier came up, handed me 50 Lei and whispered “Will this be enough to cover the rest of the needs for tomorrows’ birthdays?” I almost cried. Immediately I told her “YES!”, that along with her 50 and the change from the 100 earlier it would cover everything we needed. And then I shared with her how I had prayed in the car on the way home for the Lord to provide somehow the funds for the birthdays for the next day. I explained to her how I literally had zero funds to pull out of my bank account for it – and the foundation I work for has put an almost freeze on all spending because of a recent financial crisis they are having. I knew I couldn’t ask them to cover the costs for the birthdays either. Anyhow, I am super grateful and super in awe of the unexpected blessings from yesterday!!
To top the day off, Courtney let me borrow her computer charger and I was able to speak via Skype video with my most beautiful, 1 month old niece, or more like Aunt Kels spoke to her, for the longest time last night. *Sigh*, Wonderful.
PS. If you are interested in helping out with any of the financial needs mentioned, you can go directly to a secure, online giving page for moi 🙂 through my sending organization, CTEN. All donations are receipted for tax purposes!