I really wanted to stay current with the majority of these articles, especially at this crucial time in the world, but for a couple of reasons, I’m finding this difficult. Firstly we don’t have broadband at home, (a decision based on financial reasons) and only get into the church office a couple of times a week. Secondly, the world situation is moving so quickly, that an article is no sooner written than it’s out of date. And perhaps thirdly, because retirement hasn’t quite worked out as we imagined and lazy mornings over the coffee and papers, although admittedly they happen, are ‘rushed’ rather than ‘lazy’!
The current world situation is shockingly unsafe and unstable and the only sensible and Godly thing to say is, yet again, let’s pray for world leaders. God bless them and give them wisdom, discernment, understanding, skill, strength and courage.
But a by product of all this instability is the prolonged shockingly low interest rates that savers have had to endure over the last 8 years or so. We are constantly grateful to God that at this time in our lives, we can describe ourselves, in that quaint English term, as ‘comfortable’. Not wealthy, but not poor, we can pay the bills, coffee and eat out occasionally and enjoy holidays.
Yet in my late 50’s I remember waking up in a panic as retirement grew rapidly closer and we had been unable to make any provision for old age. I remember thinking, ‘I’m not ready for the television, tea and arrowroot biscuits yet’, which at that time I imagined would be our lot!
I know I should be ashamed that in the dark of night, this was often my thinking. God has undertaken, provided and blessed massively for us over the years and surely retirement wouldn’t curtail this. And of course it hasn’t. It is difficult to see clearly how this happened, but little by little, mostly over the last 10 years of our working life, we managed to ‘squirrel’ away some savings. Some natural happenings and good choices helped in this, but I have often found this is Gods way. Brown envelopes stuffed with money, may be part of the answer, but it’s often ‘normal’ events, I believe brought about in Gods timing for us, which is part of His provision.
Then annoyingly, as we have managed to accumulate savings, partly also by careful living, interest rates drop to an all time low. Along with hundreds of thousands of others especially in our age group, the boost to our income hasn’t materialised. But we have learned, we are not dependent on anyone but God. As one door of provision closes, another opens. We look for Him in the natural as well as the supernatural, the ‘bargains’ we find just as we need them, the ‘special offers’. In one of the articles just a few weeks ago, I talked about financial integrity, seek to honour God in this area and national interest rates are not our provision, God is. The God who says,’ Give and it will be given to you’. (Luke 6.38). Who says, ‘Bring the tithes into the storehouse and I will pour out blessings you cannot contain’. (Malachi 3. 10-12) The God who says He is Jehovah Jireh, our provider.(Genesis 22.14). The God who made the jar of flour and the jug of oil endure until all need was met and the national famine was over, this God meets not only our needs but our wants. (1 Kings 17 15-16)
Matthew 6.33 ‘ Seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these(material) things will be given to you as well.’