“We’re past the New Year and I asked you to post all your spending into the Quicken program.” Paul reminded his wife, Carole, after their first anniversary. Paul put his meticulous foot down. “It’s time. No more putting this off.”
“But I don’t know how. For Easter, you gave me a jeweled calculator. I use it every day. Isn’t that enough?”
She explained, “The computer program is stuck on 2012. Quicken has a firewall up. It hates me.” I’m off the hook she gloated to herself.
“I know how to update it.” Her tax accountant husband offered. “I’ll load the new program.”
While he stripped off the old and installed the new money management program, the nervous Carole wrung her hands and wiped the sweat off her brow. As he got the program up and running, he hummed a merry tune.
“Now it’s your turn. You need to post all your bill pays, automatic payments, deposits, debits, checks, and fees in Quicken from November on.”
She was speechless. All that posting? That’s like copying a telephone book.
“You have been writing down all your withdrawals and debits, don’t you?”
“Well, I…mostly do and save all the receipts.”
He was astonished and horrified. “How could you?!”
To him, sins at the top of the list next to murder included not posting debits, deposits and payments.
Carole mused, “You know when God said that a man shall leave his mother and father and he and his wife become one, I don’t think he meant that they share Quicken as well as a bed and breakfast.”
“I disagree. This is good for you.”
And it was eventually. Carole bit her fingernails as she posted on the program for two days.
After her first attempt, Paul wanted to know, “Does it balance?”
“Nope. But it’s only off by $133.00! Not bad, if I say so myself!”
She posted some more. The next day, the difference was enough to buy a hot tub and have change left over. Carole was excited!
Paul took over. Though he usually smiled playing number acrobatics, he came out of the office every hour shaking his head.
Carole quipped, “Still having fun? Still love me?”
Finally after the second sunrise and sunset, feeling as if he’d invested more time than the federal budget for the nation, he staggered out of his home office and collapsed on the floor.
When he came back to life, Paul gasped, “It’s balanced.”
God planned for Carole to grow in skills without any whining. He sent Paul into her life to make sure that she did.
There are times when growing and changing are necessary. God may bring new people in, new programs, or unsolved problems to handle. All forces us to grow. When it happens, we might think, “That’s the way we’ve always done it.” But God is giving you a chance to try something brand new.
Many of you face situations or new challenges that seem impossible to you. It doesn’t matter if it seems that numbers, Quicken, or something else is out to get you. Whatever the challenge when failure may seem as inevitable as being in the path of an oncoming car, God has a way and will show you how. You will grow.
Hold onto this promise in Jesus’ own words, “And surely I am with you always to the very end of the age.” Matthew 28:20.
And that’s a great promise of God’s divine power and help that gives real meaning to “May the Force be with you!”
[Jo Russell is a Christian speaker, author of scores of articles, a half dozen anthology contributions, and award-winning Which Button Do You Push to Get God to Come Out? A Humorous Devotional for Women. available from Amazon.com, her speaking engagements and website, www.button-to-god.com. She lives in northeast Arizona with her husband, Ed. Enjoy chuckles and speeches, tips and excerpts in website options and weekly blog.]