"When I was in high school a best buddy and I exchanged $2 bills. We told each other that even when we were broke and down on our luck, we still had $2. I took it seriously," remembers Dave Martin.
"Several years had passed. I was out of college, married and in Thief River Falls Minnesota. I wasn't a pastor yet, but Carol and I were very active in the local Evangelical Free Church. I was keen on seeing Pete, Dee and their family to come to church. I kept asking them."
"Would you let your three kids come to Sunday school?" I asked. Dee was for it, Pete had reservations. The children eventually came.
The boys came to Sunday school, but after awhile they were hesitant to come. "Everyone was wearing suits, and we boys have these old sweaters." Dave heard of their embarrassment. The next Sunday, Dave the Sunday school superintendent, stood up in front of the church, wearing his sweater. "The boys beamed at me."
Sometime later, we were at the Wednesday evening prayer meeting, when one of the dear saints who worked for the public works department shared, "Pete and Dee are going to get their utilities turned off. We should pray about it."
Pastor Joe Swan said, "Pray about it! We are going to take up an offering." And so he did. He pulled out a paper bag, passed it around, with families putting a dollar bill in as it passed their chair.
"I was dead broke," remembers Dave. "Except for the $2 bill tucked away in my billfold. I didn't want to give it up, but I felt the Spirit of the Lord prompt me. I dropped it in as the bag passed by." Their lights stayed on and Pete got back on his feet. Pete and Dee started attending church.
One year later we were ready to take our first church in Hector, Minnesota. The church was having a little going-a-way party for us, and Pastor Joe found a paper bag and passed it around again so that church members could give us a gift to send us off to Hector.
When we arrived home, and began to sort through the bag, there was the exact $2 bill I had given to Pete and Dee in a sealed envelope.
I went to see Pete the next day, "How did you know I had given you the $2 bill?" I asked. Pete said, "I know of no one else dumb enough to give me their last cent!"
"I still have the $2 bill in my billfold as a constant reminder of being faithful when being faithful hurts. I photocopied the bill, framed it, and gave it to Pete for their 50th anniversary, only I changed the picture on it; instead of the president, we put a picture of Pete."
Pete and Dee grew in the Lord, raised their family, and was successful as a business man. His children to this day are walking with the Lord.
"Isn't GOD GOOD!"
I am the Director of Vision and Design at Hidden Acres Christian Center (www.hacamps.org) in Central Iowa. I have an M.A. in English Education from Truman State. You may follow my writing at the website listed below. www.hiddenacrescamp.blogspot.com
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