Getting Rid of the Prosperity Gospel, by Marsha Jago

A wee one awakened me and I can’t get back to sleep. I can’t stop thinking about what an interesting ride the last year and a half has been…

By all conventional standards my life should feel out of control. Because of multiple environmental IgE allergies coming to crisis point and a few bad food intolerances, almost all of what I would have previously eaten has been removed as an option for me. I can’t eat anything that comes in a package/can/jar of any kind without feeling AWFUL. I have had to go old school and can my own tomatoes and apple sauce so that I can ensure there is no mold contamination, and then make my own tomato paste, ketchup, barbecue sauce etc. I can’t even drink orange juice or take communion without having allergy symptoms. I can’t eat any grains except rice, which has me mostly “paleo” but then I am so intolerant of soy that even the soy in chicken feed (which gets into egg yolks) has meant that I can’t eat eggs — a major staple in the paleo diet. Nuts and dried fruit are generally out too because of mold contamination. My diet has been so reduced that I literally find myself praying that God will bring me food I can eat to get me through the day. And he always does, just as he promised in Matthew 6.

And in the last while I feel like I have lost all my well-loved control of our finances. I have felt too needed (and busy!) at home to return to work after my mat leave, and within the first 6 weeks of my unpaid leave we have had: $1000 in car repairs, an unexpected $1300 tax bill upon reassessment of the last tax year, a broken 6-year-old furnace and a night without heat in -30 weather, an unexpected $450 utility bill, and now as of Tuesday a 6-year-old convection oven that doesn’t work and will cost $550 to repair.

WOW!

Control is an illusion, my friends!

My life doesn’t feel out of control, it feels like I am firmly enveloped in the love and care of a close and intimate God incarnate who is walking through all of this with me and shepherding me.

I can see that He is active in the details, bringing organic farmers into my life who happen to raise chickens with a very rare soy-free diet and have adequate supply to bring me 8 dozen soy-free eggs on the day that my oven broke so this breastfeeding mama will not starve and will have some quick/easy/hearty meal options. I know that in the grand scheme of things we will be okay financially and I needed to get rid of the last vestiges of “prosperity gospel” thinking that says if you are faithful with your money you will be blessed financially. There are no guarantees that the circumstances of this life will be easy whether you walk with God or not (case in point: Dietrich Bonhoeffer), just a guarantee that He will meet you and lead you through it all if you let him.

IMG_8447Marsha is a wife, mama, and Registered Nurse who is learning to follow Jesus as her Shepherd in the everyday ups and downs of life, and feels called to be open and honest along the way about her triumphs, disasters and lessons learned.

Post script: The night after writing this I stood in front of our stove and asked the Lord to fix our stove for less than the quote of $550 we had received. The next day my brother-in-law (an electrical engineer whom I hadn’t even thought of as an option) came over with his circuit testers and tools. He took the back off my stove, wiggled a few wires that supply power to the offending circuit board, decided it was too big a project to tackle just before lunch and put it back together. When he did so it was fixed! Praise the Lord!

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