Just In Time or Just In Case?

Ever since I can remember, the only way I have experienced and lived my, a little more than four decades of life, is to live by faith. “What does that mean to live by faith?” many have asked me here in the West. It simply means you don’t know if you will be able to buy socks for your kids for this winter, you don’t know if you will be able to pay electricity, gas and telephone bills, or buy a birthday card for your friend. You don’t know how you are going to make it through this month when a new month starts and yet at the end of the  month you have paid most of the urging bills, you were able to get some decent socks without holes and you made your kid happy with a 5 Euro bill pocket money. At the end of the day, you sit there quietly and wonder how you are going to make it through next month.
You learn to live by faith by living it an
d you also learn  the new spelling of the word “faith” which goes:  R-I-S-K.

Here is an example: We urgently needed 700 Euros for an expense that came along this month and we did not have such money in our bank account. So as usual we laid it before God and said, “Lord, you are our boss, we work for you. Here is a bill that needs to be paid, please take care of it.” Wolf keeps his cool after such prayers and I agree with him in prayer and continue to panic. Its just the way men and women react, I guess. Alright, next day is the payment day and we checked our bank account online. Still no money in our bank account.  Around noon time, we cleared our post box. Usually there are some advertisements (we want your money) and some bills (your money actually is now mine) in the post box. Well, this time among the bills and the  ads, there was an envelope from Canada. We opened the envelope and in there was a cheque for 700 Euros from a woman whom we don’t know. Did you notice that I said 700 Euros and not 700 Canadian dollars? 700 Euros! Not 600 and not even 800 – it’s 700 exact Euros! From Canada not Europe,  Canadians don’t think in Euros!

Here is another example: A packet arrived at our door. This time the sender had called us earlier to inform that a packet will be coming soon in the next few days and whether we are at home to receive it. So we expected a packet but we did not expect what was inside the packet. Wolf opened it and found a thin warm jacket, his size with zipper and in burgundy color. This time Wolf is all  excited and I kept my cool, (very unusual, but it happens!) It was a simple nice jacket, nothing exciting. But Wolf couldn’t get over his excitement. He was still exclaiming in his excited voice about the jacket and said, ‘this morning I woke up and the living room was cold. I thought to myself, it would be nice to have a thin warm jacket with a zipper and in burgundy color. And just-in-time, here it is! This is exactly what I wished this morning! I can’t believe it!” I joined him in his excitement about how God even cares about a wish for a jacket to its very details!

The term ‘Just in time’ ( JIT ) in the product manufacturing world means zero stockholding. That is, the seller coordinates the production and the delivery from the manufacturer to the buyer in such a way that there is no need for him to keep stocks in the warehouse. In that way the seller saves the warehouse costs and there are no finances tied up unproductively in the stocks at the warehouse and he saves the energy, time and effort that it takes to maintain the stock until it would bring in profit for him. The Toyota car manufacturers succeeded in JIT goal of zero stockholding and other western manufacturers like the computer suppliers Dell copied them to success as well.

But what the Toyota car manufacturers do not know is that JIT is a tested, proven ancient concept which was a success even then. Remember Abraham, the father of faith? He did not receive this title just like that. God promised him a great future and later the very same God tells him to kill his very future. Abraham climbs up the mountain with zero stockholding, just enough wood, fire, and a knife. His son Issac was a clever boy. He asked him, “father where is the lamb for the sacrifice?” “God himself will provide, my son” was the answer. Abraham was not lacking anything in his bank account. He didn’t bother to withdraw quickly 2 rams from his flock …just-in-case. He looked to God and not his good-standing bank account for his provision. He had a close relationship with his provider and he knew his supplier will never fail him. He will provide …just-in-time.

We often miss God’s “just-in-time” moments simply because we keep idling in stock the people, the money, the talents, the intelligence for our “just-in-case” moments. Just-in-case attitude is unproductive and it is a non-profit earning activity. It makes you to walk by sight not by faith. A just-in-case attitude is a fear based, problem focused lifestyle that prevents you from experiencing God. How often human ‘just-in-case’ mind set stands as a problem to the the divine ‘just-in-time’ solutions. Therefore, be honest and check how much of your bank account balance possesses a  ‘just-in-case’ attitude which  is of no use to you and to others but with a ‘just-in-time’ attitude it can be life saving and life changing to someone, somewhere.

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4 comments

  1. Mercy/Wolf,
    I can’t tell you how much this post meant to me this morning. I have been pondering this question for myself personally with the Father for the past 2 days. I have been sorting through whether or not my ideas for freeing me up to devote my time and resources to discipleship and church planting have been my ideas or His. I won’t go into too much detail but it involves leaving a very secure employment situation. As you know, this should be a carefully walked out conversation with God. I know this was posted days ago, but I was lead to read it this morning while riding the bus to work and it was timely after my conversation with God last night. Thanks for the post and sharing your journey!
    Learning to listen still,
    Michael
    Virginia Beach, VA

    1. So very happy to know that this has helped you, Michael. I Pray that God will lead you further according to his purpose and his promises that are planned specifically for you.

    1. Thanks Gabe, I am glad it encourages you.

      Way to go for the body of Christ to behave Acts 2:42-47 and Acts 4:32-37!

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