james david low

live / work / play / worship

A Guitar Story

Been meaning to blog this for a while. Not sure of everything I want to say through it, but I know its a story and I want to share it.

The background is something like this. I’ve wanted one of these guitars for a long time, a Michael Kelly Hybrid Special, but… I’ve also been thinking about the words of Jesus, giving everything away to the poor and how much I have compared to other people. I also struggle a lot with deciding things for myself, especially things that I want, I feel like God doesn’t want to give them to me, or worse wants to take them away! Any time I have to make a decision I can often get worried about making the wrong one or something not being what God wants and I can end up feeling really guilty for it. Some of the things I do this with include:

  • – Breaking fast in the morning instead of the evening
  • – Not knowing exactly the songs to choose for worship instead of just trusting and picking them and then putting it off to the last minute so I have to just pick them quick anyway
  • – Checking my email before having my quiet time
  • – Buying a meal for myself that I like
  • – I even worried once that God might not want me to program ever again!

The guitar isn’t available in HK, so after watching a few videos on youtube I thought I would see if they had any on Ebay. One company was willing to ship internationally. Around the same time I started to receive abnormally large sums on money through my paypal through ad clicks and people paying to extend plugins that were original distributed for free.

After struggling for a while with whether it was right to buy the guitar, but secretly wanting it and wanting to look a bit like David Crowder, one day during my quiet time on my podium I decided that I’d get the guitar if I got US$800 in my paypal. This was the sum of the cost of the guitar + shipping + tithe. At the time I had some faith but still thought it was unlikely.

Anyway, days went by and I actually got close in my paypal earning up to $550 from ads/freelance programming. Then I sold some things on Ebay and ended up getting $200 for it, even though I thought I might only get about $100. I had $750, 50 dollars short! I was actually starting to believe this might happen, and was waiting for God to come through and send me the last $50.

It came to the day the auction on Ebay was going to end, and I was starting to feel sorry for myself, feeling, you see God wants to give everybody else stuff and not me. Or thinking God really wants to do something else because something else would be better for me, and started to feel really guilty. Then I started to journal about what I was thinking and feeling, and said I was sick of feeling guilty for wanting stuff. And I felt something small say “Then don’t”. I wasn’t and I’m still not sure if it was me or God, but then I felt it say, “Go buy the guitar”.

I was thinking, ok, maybe I just got the last $50, so I checked my email on my iPhone, but no new money in my paypal (more self pity). I decided to go upstairs to my computer. I checked the auction, it had ended…

I decided to to do one last search on Ebay just to see what was there. The original company had relisted! And they relisted it $50 cheaper!!!! I couldn’t quite believe it. I bought it there and was very happy :-) and its one of the few signs of God’s provision that I’ve had (or at least that I’ve noticed!), given that it was the exact guitar, the exact price, and not just any store, but the store that offered me international shipping.

Anyway, I’m not just blogging this a testimony to how good God is, and I don’t think generally we should test God like this. I still didn’t feel it that much, and the feeling of happiness faded quite fast. Maybe its because I haven’t got the guitar yet, but I also know there are a lot of deep reasons why I don’t feel God’s love that much, or worry about him not giving me stuff I want. I believe that we are to share what we have with those in need, but that God also wants to bless us and give us stuff that make us happy. I also believe sometimes bad things happen or we don’t get what we think would be best, and we don’t know why.

I do know that God is good, even if he doesn’t come through like he seemed to this time, there is a reason, and this prayer helps me a lot.

One Comment

    This is awesome J!! And what you say is so true…one of the things that spoke to me most from conference in Sydney was Craig Groeschel (Look him up, he’s awesome!), he preached a message on this phrase: “I don’t have to understand everything to believe in something”.

    4:45am / Nov 1st / 09 Pip