31 March 2012

Blessings can come in the strangest packages

This week some strange things happened in our house. Not in a ghost-in-the-attic, Round The Twist kind of way. Each event was not even particularly remarkable on its own, but coming as they did, one after another, they eventually made me sit up and take notice.
It began when my office phoned to let me know about some extra work I might be interested in. After hours, they said. Possibly able to be done from my home computer, they said. As much or as little as I could fit in around my day-to-day mothering duties. I was thrilled and accepted right away. Not exactly mind-blowing, but still enough to make me a wee bit excited for the extra money I would be contributing to our single income family.
On Monday evening an informal jam session had been arranged with one of the singers from our church band. Just a casual practice at our place to go over a song that needed work. Our guest arrived and let herself in, walking into the kitchen carrying a container full of freshly made minestrone, still warm off the stove. She hadn’t been invited for dinner. She had already eaten and so had we. It was simply an offer of food from one family to another because they had plenty to spare. The soup smelt amazing, and Tim and I were grateful for the gesture (who wouldn’t be!), and promptly froze it for another day.
Then one day in the afternoon mail, a cheque arrived for some freelance marketing work I had done back in February. It wasn’t a huge sum of money, nor was it out of the ordinary, since, like most people, I expect to be paid for work I have done. But I welcomed it with open arms and rejoiced again some more.
The next day, I was walking at the beach when my phone rang. It was another freelance marketing job for the same employer. It was an urgent project which required a 24 hour turnaround. Thankfully I had no appointments the following day so I was able to commit my time to it with no interruptions, except an 8½ month old baby, don’t get me started…
By now I was beginning to take notice of the favour which seemed to be following me around. It wasn’t usually like this.
A few days later, Tim phoned me from the doctor’s surgery, having gone to have some stitches removed from a wart which had been cut out. We expected to have quite a bill to pay, since the initial surgery and the biopsy of the wart hadn’t yet been accounted for. Tim was over the moon. It had all been bulk billed! Who knows if that’s usual practice, but we smiled down the phone lines at each other anyway.
Later that night the penny dropped that these blessings weren’t simply random events, but had actually come at a particular time when we really needed them. Last week I had been doing our banking online, looking at the funds not-available in our account. I had two phone bills which were due that day, but not enough money to pay them. Had we suddenly, or rather over several months, become what tabloid news refers to as ‘battlers’? Urgh! Right there, at my computer, all I could do was pray to God for help. We clearly needed some.
Now I don’t know whether to be more pleased by the string of events, or by the fact that God heard my prayers and intervened through situations I had not even considered worthy of a second thought.