Right from the beginning of scripture, God has always provided for man. We learn from the account of creation in Genesis 2:8, “Now the Lord God had planted a garden in the east, in Eden; and there he put the man he had formed. The Lord God made all kinds of trees grow out of the ground—trees that were pleasing to the eye and good for food”.
God didn’t just make man and instruct him to till the garden and sow seed for food; He already provided everything man needed. Adam was happy enough to live in the garden with all the animals God had created but God decided something was missing. Adam needed another human being he could relate with, who could be his helper. One again, Jehovah Jireh provided one of the most important needs of man; the need for companionship.
Even when Adam and Eve fell to the deception of Satan in the Garden of Eden, which led to their committing the sin of disobedience to God, Jehovah Jireh sprang into action once again, providing clothing for them to replace the leaves they covered themselves with. The discovered they were naked and were quite satisfied with covering their bodies with leaves. God knew that this would not be enough especially to protect them from the elements, so he provided them with animal hide which was a lot more reliable than the clothing of leaves they put on.
The Jews had many names for God but the one we are looking at in this write-up is Jehovah Jireh, which means, “The Lord will provide”. It was the name given to the place where God provided a ram to replace Isaac, whom Abraham was willing to sacrifice in response to God’s command.
I have personally experienced times in my life when God provided for my needs. I remember a time in my life when I was homeless for a time. I was in a hostel studying for a professional examination when news got to me that we had been ejected from the home I shared with my mom and brothers. As at this time, my exams were to be held in a couple of days after which I would be expected to vacate the hostel. I began imagining myself on the streets, trying to find somewhere to live. I prayed about it but I was afraid of what would happen after my exams.
The morning of the examination, a couple of friends I studied with began talking about what they would do after they completed their exam. When it got to my turn, all I could say was, ‘I don’t know’. Then one of the guys said, “Come on, you’ll spend the weekend in my place”. I was dumb-founded! I expected God to answer my prayer but this was totally unexpected. It was during that same weekend that this same friend got to know I had nowhere to live and provided a temporary accommodation for me until I got accommodated by an aunt.
During the trying times of my life, I often drew inspiration from characters in the Bible. Abraham, Jacob, Joseph and David. One character who greatly influenced my growing up was Joseph. Like Joseph, I was the youngest boy. I initially experienced what it meant to be doted upon and live in privilege and comfort. Like Joseph also, I experienced what it meant to have the rug swept off from under my feet and suddenly find myself spiralling down with nothing to clutch at but God. Like Joseph, I experienced what it meant to be lied against and be punished for something I didn’t do.
One of the lessons I have learnt about God’s providence and the people who trusted Him was the attitude these people exhibited while waiting on God. Let us take Joseph for instance;
- He worked hard at whatever he was assigned to do and wherever he was sent to. In the house of Potiphar, he became so outstanding that he became the chief slave.
- When Potiphar’s wife lied against him and he ended up in prison, Joseph continued to make a positive impact until he became the Chief Prisoner.
- Joseph showed integrity and faithfulness in all that he did while as a slave and when he was in incarceration. Never was there a time it was recorded that he blamed God for his misfortune.
- When he became Prime Minister of Egypt, he managed the food store of Egypt and was able to provide for his family when they came looking for food.
The more I studied the life of Joseph, the more I understood God’s provision and divine favour.
When Jacob died, Joseph’s brothers were afraid that he would seek revenge for all the wrongs they had done to him. By this time however, Joseph had realized why everything he went through happened. He shared his perspective with his brothers; “Don’t be afraid. Am I in the place of God? You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.”
God’s divine purpose was to use Joseph to provide for the Jews during the time of famine. Had he not been Prime Minister then, many of the Jews would have starved to death.
God knows the end from the beginning and no matter what you may be going through now, He has a divine purpose for your life and everything you need to achieve that purpose, He has provided.
There is a process between where you are now and where He wants you to be. It will take some pruning, shaking and refining to make you ready for that place. You just need to keep the focus, trust Him and He will do the rest.
Steve Popoola is the editor of Biblepraise Newsletter and the founder of the Biblepraise Fellowship Online at http://www.biblepraise.org. He lives in Kent, United Kingdom, where he works as an IT Professional. He currently serves as a Worship Leader as well as Home Group Leader in his local church and on occasion, speaks at invited events. He is the founder of the Biblepraise Fellowship Online Ministry and Moderator/Editor of the Biblepraise Newsletter. He can be reached through His email address, firstname.lastname@example.org