Do you remember George Müller? If you don’t, you really ought to spend some time reading about him. He was an incredible man. Put simply, he was an evangelist and director of an orphanage. But that is the tip of the iceberg that was his ministry.
This won’t be a comprehensive look at that iceberg, nor even the at the tip, but at a small story about him I’ve always loved that impacts me even now.
While he was running the orphanage (which was also a thriving school because of his oversight), there came a day when there was no food for breakfast- not for him nor the staff nor the 300 children in their care. At being informed of this, Müller insisted that all the children be seated at the table as usual. Once they were settled, he prayed, thanking God for the food… You know, the food that wasn’t there? The Breakfast That Wasn’t?
Surely, the children had to be giving each other looks; maybe the housemother was on the verge of tears. But within minutes of his prayer, a baker knocked on the door, saying he couldn’t sleep the night before, and just knew somehow that they would need bread. So, he’d baked three batches and brought it in for them.
But that’s not all.
There was soon another knock, this time from a milk man, whose cart had broken down in front of the orphanage. The milk would’ve gone bad by the time it would be fixed, so the milk man offered milk to the orphanage as well.
And breakfast was served. If anyone has ever literally tasted God’s providence, I think it was those who enjoyed that bread and milk.
I know that countless stories just like that abound around the world; I have my own stories of God providing exactly what we needed right when we needed it. Because it’s happening all the time!
If you live paycheck to paycheck, you understand the back-and-forth feelings of we-have-plenty and a couple weeks later somehow-we-have-to-stretch-$200-over-two-weeks. This is a common reality for a lot of people. Even if you are thrifty and only spend your money on essentials, it’s tricky sometimes to navigate those periods of waiting for the next paycheck.
So, I decided I would dub those times- for as long as we have them- as “George Müller Weeks.” Because I want to think like George did. I want to thank God for how He’s providing and provided when there is no food in front of me, or seemingly no way to put gas in the car, or to replace that car part, or what have you.
I want to count myself rich- and abundantly so- even on days when buying a cup of coffee would be exorbitant. Because for one thing, I know that I’ll have food. I know that I will still have indoor plumbing. I know that I’ll have a place to sleep tonight. And that’s way more than many people in the world can say.
No matter what level of “rich” or “poor” we are, we are bankrupt apart from Christ, and dependent on him for everything. And when we dwell in him, we are rich, having everything we need. In every sense of the word- emotionally, spiritually, physically, financially, mentally…
Maybe it’s sounds trite to say it again, but the statement, “You can be a victim or a victor, but not both,” has always rung true whether I like it or not.
George Müller chose to be a victor. Because he knew that in Christ, we are victors. And because of Christ’s victory reigning in his life, Muller had an “expectancy” as a friend of mine called it recently. I guess another word for that would be hope.
I want to live expectantly of what God will do, how He will provide. On the edge of my seat, filled with gratitude, I’ll be ready for wonder. That’s basically what a childlike faith is, isn’t it?
That’s what creativity should do. It should redeem. It should yield hope. It should be a lens that corrects your eyesight and gives you a vision where there was none. God is the most creative being in the universe. When all was darkness, God made light. While we were still sinners, Christ died for the ungodly.