“OK Lord, you’ve got my attention.” It didn’t sound like much of a prayer, even to me, after the miracle of us getting a home when we’d been so in debt. But I knew that God understood.
I’d promised when we moved in yesterday that I was going to live on what we had. No more charging things and then challenging God to provide the payment a month later. He apparently intended to take me at my word – and he was doing it through Laurie- our first-grader.
Out-of-breath and distraught, our little girl had run back a block because she’d forgotten to tell mommy that it was her turn to bring cupcakes for the class – TODAY! With two days to payday and not even change in the house, I’d answered her pleading brown eyes with an extra kiss and a promise to be there at noon with the cupcakes. She bounded off the stairs again, happy, and I giddily called after her – “Don’t worry – it’s no problem.”
But there WAS a problem. Two minutes later, imagining Laurie’s trusting smile when I delivered on the promise, I rummaged in the unpacked boxes for baking tins and the mixer. I confidently set them on the counter; then opened the refrigerator, only to discover there were no eggs! No eggs? How can I make cupcakes without eggs?
“Now what?” was my next prayer… though I’d no sooner prayed than I began to – a little frantically – try to figure out how I could fix the problem. The little voice inside whispered – Haven’t you learned ANYTHING? That’s how you got into trouble before. Trust me – Pray!
Pray? For eggs? I looked at the clock. It was after 9. I was running out of time, and I was mystified. Mystified because the most unusual peace had replaced my “normal” totally frantic feeling over the possibility of breaking a promise. One word had brought that peace – Pray. The word hung before me – enticing and sweet as the smell of fresh laundry on the clothesline. “OK,” I surrendered, “ I promised to take you at your word, Lord, and you have surely shown me by getting us into this home that you can do anything. If I can trust you with a big thing like a home, I guess I can surely trust you with little things like eggs. Please help me keep my word to my little girl, and keep my promise to you not to spend what I don’t have.”
The next step was an act of faith. I turned on the oven and measured all the ingredients as our pre-schooler lined the tins with paper cups. We’d just finished making – and sampling – the frosting when I heard the mailman close the box on the front porch. Of course! God could send us a refund check or something in the mail! I rushed to the porch and almost, as they say, “swallowed my teeth,” – for there, neatly stacked under the mailbox, were two blue dozen-size cartons of eggs!
Surely mailmen didn’t bring eggs, I laughed, as our little preschooler joined me on the porch chanting “Eggs! Eggs!” We ran to look out over each side of the big open porch that lined our house front, glancing up and down the street. No mailman; as a matter of fact, no one, was in sight.
Leaving the mystery for the moment, we raced in the house and got those cupcakes finished, cooled, frosted, and delivered shortly before noon.
“They look home-made,” the teacher said as she greeted me at the door. “Yes, it’s -um, a heavenly recipe,” I smiled, thinking of the morning surprise. Laurie waved and grinned her thanks as the teacher closed the door, and Cheri and I walked back home wondering about the mysterious eggs.
The luxury of two-dozen eggs, and the baking utensils still on the counter convinced me to treat my husband later that evening, and a favorite dessert – gingerbread came to mind. As I was measuring the ingredients the thought came to make a double batch so some could go in lunches the following day.
I grabbed the ringing phone as Cheri ran and threw her arms around Ken’s legs as he came in the front door. My mind only partially registered his query, “What smells so good?” because my garrulous friend Bonnie’s voice was asking, “Did you find some eggs on your porch?”
“Was that you?” I exclaimed. “I looked and didn’t see anyone – why would you leave eggs on my porch?”
“Well,” she said, in her typical one-breath paragraph, “about 8 or so this morning I got the strongest urge for gingerbread…”(I glanced, surprised, at the still steaming pans on the stovetop)… “and well, you know I can’t bake, but I thought of you and how much I like gingerbread. I know things are tight for you just getting into your house, and I thought maybe if I bought the most expensive ingredient you would make me a batch….”
“Gingerbread?” I croaked, as she continued, “David offered to go to the store before school to get the eggs and he was supposed to ring your bell and give them to you, but he just got home from school and informed me that he just left them on your porch!”
I sucked in my breath as she finished her tale with “Desperate, huh? So would you consider making …”
“Gingerbread?” “No problem,” I laughed, playfully wagging my finger no to Ken’s attempts to “sneak” a taste before supper. But first, let me tell you about our morning.”
Amazed laughter and joy filled two kitchens as the story of the cupcake prayer unfolded. To this day the smell of gingerbread is a reminder of a ‘heavenly recipe’: For a lesson in trust: just add eggs!
Prayer has brought such wonder into our lives. The prayer to be a Miracle – to be the hands and feet of God, bringing help to the hurting, directs to many opportunities. The Wrong Store? where God sent a delivery girl to answer a prayer, Take Out Your Wallet! led to a woman finding her way back to God, and Surprise Us For Dinner, God! (6 months of dinner surprises) are just a few making their way into 31 Miracles. Do you have some miracle stories too? I’d love to hear them!