God Protects His Investments
by Damainion Ewell
You walk through your front door after fighting through traffic. You are too mentally exhausted to hang up your coat, so you just toss it across the couch. You drop the keys on your glass table. With a loud thud, the table is nearly cracked up the middle. The high-priced designer shoes you recently purchased gets the bargain-priced treatment, as you kick them off and fling them across the room. You flop down on the couch, laying on top of the coat that you threw down beforehand and grab the remote. As you proceed to flick from channel to channel, you notice some alarming words that wander across the screen. According to reports, thousands upon thousands more people have lost their jobs. You decide to entertain the negative, so you listen as the news anchor announces an outlook of doom, gloom, and utter bleakness.
The world is seemingly a desolate, cold place with no shelter to run into and no relief in sight. You listen with brutish intent as they report how many points the stock market has plummeted. You observe intently as people from all over the country share woeful testimonies of repossession, foreclosure and marriages that have succumbed under the pressure of it all. You attend your ears even further to the accounts of great companies suffering even greater downfalls, as the Board of Directors attain severance packages larger than most citizens will earn in their lifetime. On top of all of that, in a bit of ironic humiliation, you watch as advertisers peddle products that the average person can no longer afford.
The climate is ostensibly the same on every news channel, and now your ears are wringing with despair. You finally figure out that your brain cannot absorb any further bad news, so you walk into the kitchen to pour yourself a drink. While in the kitchen, your stomach rudely reminds you that you have not eaten in quite a long time. You decide to wait it out and not have the hearty meal your stomach so desperately desires. You plop back onto the couch with drink in hand, proceeding to skulk through the channels yet again. Without any forethought at all, you begin to watch the news once more. The report you hear is nearly identical to the one you have just heard minutes ago. Many of the jobs that were available are now gone. The rate of unemployment is at an all-time high. People are being laid off by the thousands and entire cities are suffering. A sharp pain shoots across your head, and you become overwhelmed by the pressure. With malicious intent and fury, you throw your drink clear across the room. With teary-eyed reckless abandon, you pick up the glass table and smash it to pieces. You fall down in a heap, one decibel away from screaming, yet too broken to be put back together immediately.
What just happened? Let’s hit the rewind button…
That morning, you awake at your usual time. Awaiting your arrival is the aromatic ecstasy of coffee that began brewing just minutes ago. Mornings like these require no snooze button or alarm clock whatsoever. As the brewing process comes to an end, you place two bagels into the toaster and grab your favorite cream cheese out of the refrigerator. You search for a clean coffee mug, and your favorite “JESUS IS LORD” cup happens to be the only one usable at the moment. You pour the steaming brew into the cup, with two Splendas and a heavy dose of cream to perfect the concoction. Two nearly burned bagels suddenly pop out of the toaster. While they are still hot, you spread a generous amount of cream cheese over the bagels, never giving a thought to the caloric ramifications. You sit at the dining room table, enjoying every bite and embracing every sip. You walk to the front porch to get the newspaper to check out the headlines of the previous day. You sift through the paper section by section, but for some odd reason, your eyes cannot let go of the “JESUS IS LORD” logo on the coffee mug. It never dawns on you that this message will be the sum total of all the sustenance you will need that day.
Let’s hit the fast forward button a little bit.
You get to work, on time and thankful as usual. Your favorite parking space is mysteriously available. It is the space closest to the side of the building that you work on, so you will not have to walk far to get to your desk. The day is going great already! As you get out of the car, you notice that the entire parking lot is unusually empty. “Are a lot of people on vacation?,” you wonder as you shut the car door. You do not give it another thought, as you walk inside of the acutely air conditioned building. Your bubbly and vivacious personality has made you a friend to many, as is evident with the plethora of “good mornings” that greet you on your way. You make your way to your desk and turn on the computer. As you await your computer’s long booting process to complete, you glance at a special date that you have circled on your calendar. You have planned your first vacation to the destination of your dreams. Instantly, the necessary motivation to be the best that you can be kicks into overdrive. You have worked your fingers to the bone to get to this point.
Finally, the computer is booted up and you click the e-mail icon to check the messages that have come in your absence. There is but one e-mail awaiting you, which is strange because your inbox is usually permeated with correspondence from co-workers. The e-mail is from your boss, who has requested to meet with you before the beginning of your work day. You and your boss have an excellent working relationship, so the message does not raise any red flags. You walk into your boss’s office, greeting them with a heartfelt “good morning!” They begin to explain as gently as they could that company profits have rapidly become company losses, and they can no longer afford to pay employees. Your heart begins to sink deep into your lap. They continue to explain as gently as they could that your entire department has been downsized and totally eliminated from the company. Your stomach is seized by butterflies and a sickening feeling like you have never experienced before. The gentleness swiftly leaves their mouths as they passionately announce that your services are no longer required. The earth’s bottom is opened underneath your feet, and the seemingly never-ending freefall has begun.
They place into the sweaty palms of your hands the heartrending parting gifts of a severance check and a box to place all of your belongings into. As you come to your desk for the final time, the company’s security guard lies in wait to escort you out of the building. With painstaking aggravation, you place one item after another into the dusty box, wondering what your next move would be.
“Then Abraham lifted his eyes and looked, and there behind him was a ram caught in a thicket by its horns. So Abraham went and took the ram, and offered it up for a burnt offering instead of his son. And Abraham called the name of the place, The-LORD-Will-Provide; as it is said to this day, “In the Mount of the LORD it shall be provided” (Genesis 22:13-14, NKJV).
Let’s fast forward back to the broken glass table.
You have fallen down in a heap of depression and misery. The rent is almost due. The car payment needs to be made next week. The bills are going to begin to pile up high if they are not paid. How are you going to get through this?
“He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the LORD,