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  • Tina Samples

When Life Hits Hard

Updated: Feb 18, 2022

What do you do when all hope seems lost?

I don't know why when God blesses me with a need I seem shocked. I should know by now that God takes care of me and provides, yet when it happens I feel surprised as if the very first time. Don't we do that? God blesses because he loves. God blesses because we need it. God blesses because he wants us to abound in every good work; a work that he has set aside for us to do. He gives us the provisions we need to do his work.

And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work. ------- 2 Corinthians 9:8

A Van From God

Carolyn Counterman’s world is turned upside down by her family members’ problems, as well as her own. She had to resign from her job because she couldn't work and deal with post-traumatic stress disorder at the same time. She says, “We thought God would surely get us through—but then the family fell apart. My son went to prison. My daughter-in-law lost custody of the kids because of her drug use, and because she had covered up my son’s crime.”

Carolyn and her husband suddenly had four grandkids living with them. They wondered how they were going to feed, clothe, and transport the children to appointments and #church.

“We didn't mind asking #God for food. We even asked Him for clothes, though it made me a little uncomfortable,” Carolyn says. ”But when a woman suggested to me that we pray for a van, I balked. Sure, we were having to take two cars everywhere we went with the kids, and it was an inconvenience. However, I had been taught as a youngster not to ask God for material things. We had three cars already. One of them was not paid for, and another needed repairs, but we had them. This woman was insistent, though, that we pray for a van.”

The couple didn't have anything to lose by asking, so they prayed for a van: “It wouldn't hurt our feelings if God said no because we never expected Him to say yes.”

Then things got worse. Carolyn’s father, who lived with them, began to have major problems with his car, so he borrowed their slightly broken car. Without her husband’s income, Carolyn’s daughter-in-law lost her van because she couldn't pay for it. So her in-laws lent her another of their cars. Says Carolyn, “We were down to one unpaid-for car—and sharing a broken car with my dad. Then the call came, while I was standing in the middle of Wal-Mart looking at socks. Some old friends had seen me joke on Facebook about needing a van. They wanted to know if anyone had solved my transportation problem. I said no.”

The friends told Carolyn they wanted to buy her a van. She was floored. “They apologized—actually apologized—that it was not new and not the model I wanted!” she says.

Her friends bought the family a van, paying the tax, title, and license fees. They transferred it into Carolyn’s name and handed her the key.

She says, “God had said ‘Yes!’ when I expected Him to say no. With our family so messed up, I expected God to be displeased with us, but He decided to bless us instead. He gave our friends a heart for our family and the money to buy a van. I know that God is not short on cash, but I still get surprised when He spends it on me.”

Excerpt from Wounded Women of the Bible: Finding Hope When Life Hurts
By: Dena Dyer & Tina Samples
This excerpt was written by Dena Dyer

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