I started a blog about 4 years ago but never knew anything about how to get people to actually read it. I had one follower – my mom (always a faithful follower). Eventually, I just stopped blogging. My mom has been there with me through everything so there was really no reason for her to reread the experiences that she just went through with me, so I just stopped.
Today, I went back to my old blog and I found some pretty good treasures. I’m grateful to have taken the time to write my testimonies, and wished that I had continued to do so. After reading the one I am sharing today, my eyes started to water because I remember that struggle, and God has been so faithful.
June 16, 2011 – Blessings in the Apple Store?
I have been sitting around wondering what on earth is happening to my money! It disappears and I have no idea where it is going. I have written down so many budget plans that I should be a millionaire by now, so what aren’t I?
In the past, I paid my tithes… not faithfully, but I paid them. Here lately I haven’t been able to afford to pay them, so I didn’t. Recently I was sitting in church (Antioch Fellowship Missionary Baptist Church) listening to a message on stewardship, and I thought, maybe this is why I am broke. Maybe it’s because I haven’t been giving God what is his. So I decided – the next time I get paid (which is only once a month mind you), I am going to give ten percent to the church before I run out of money, I am going to pay it all at once.
A few days later the check cleared along with my rent, car payment, and utilities. I thought, “this isn’t bad I have plenty left for the month. I just need to pay my mom for my cell phone bill and my car insurance and I’ll be fine.”
Except, SURPRISE – my annual renters insurance is due! Oh and your quarterly loan payment is also due! There is only one word to describe this situation… Crap.
All day I sat around trying to come up with a plan unsuccessfully. I called my mom after work, panicked – she gave a few suggestions. I was completely at a loss. I told myself this will get better. So, I packed up my belongings, grabbed my cell phone, started walking to my car. I proceed to then drop my cell phone and shatter the screen (are you kidding me right now?). This wasn’t a cute shatter either, this was a, “use this phone and your face will be electrocuted” shatter.
The whole way home I was so irritated. I was mentally ranting, “Here I am trying to do the right thing. I paid my stupid tithes and now all this extra stuff pops up that I have to pay (I hadn’t quite mastered giving with a cheerful heart). To make matters worse, THE STUPID PHONE IS SHATTERED and I know it’s going to cost a kidney to get it fixed. I KNEW I SHOULDN’T HAVE PAID THOSE TITHES!!!”
I walked into my apartment, plopped on my couch, scheduled an appointment with Apple and got online to do some research. How much is this going to cost me? Scanning the page…. $199. Crap.
I called my mom and asked her if she would like to accompany me to the Apple Store – both she and my aunt came. We waited for about 45 minutes to be seen (in true Apple Store fashion). During that time I decided to share with my mother this tithing dilemma. I said, if I hadn’t paid my tithes, I would have money to get this phone fixed and still be able to eat for the rest of the month. Because there is no other way to be a Marilyn, she tells me a scripture about tithing – something about the ocean- and tells me not to think that way. I am thinking “yeah, yeah”.
The apply guy finally calls us over, assess the damage, gives us the “this is not covered by warranty” speech and lays it on me. This is going to cost $99. Okay that is better than $199…. I’ll pay it, who needs food anyway?
He disappeared with my phone for about three minutes. When he came back, it looked like new. He typed some junk on his computer, disappeared below the counter, and then popped up to ask me the most RANDOM question. “How has your day been today?” Really? Did you see what I brought you? I told him my day was pretty decent until I shattered my phone. Then he says, “how about now?” He points to my receipt of 0.00 balance and says, “free of charge”…. Did he just say free of charge? I asked him, “Are you serious?” He then says, “you ladies were SO NICE and SO PATIENT as you waited to be helped that I just want to do something for you.”
At this point my eyes start watering, I tell this man that he has just saved my life (life was a little of an exaggeration, but budget for sure). I told him he has NO IDEA what he just did for me. Then, because there is no other way to be a Marilyn, she says, “YOU OWE GOD AN APOLOGY!” Indeed I do.
As you can see, I haven’t always been faithful in tithing or giving, but what a way to get started! God showed up and since then, God has blessed me in more ways than you can imagine. The windows of Heaven have been opened to me and there has been poured into my life blessings in overflowing proportions.
Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the Lord Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it. – Malachi 3:10
Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. – 2 Corinthians 9:7
Until next time,