It was time for worship. Mother’s dear friend Miss Clara was visiting with the family. Bobby proudly handed her his new Bible to use. After worship was over, Miss Clara said to Bobby, “What a beautiful copy of God’s word you have!”
“Yes,” answered Bobby. “It is the nicest Bible in the whole world, for God sent it right to me.” Then he told her of his answer to prayer for a Bible of his very own.
“God always does above all we can ask or think,” said Miss Clara. “He delights in ‘going over the top’ in good things.”
“Did He ever supply your needs for something, too?” asked Howard.
Miss Clara laughed and said, “That means you want a story.” When she had cuddled up the baby and gathered the boys around her, she went on. “I’m going to tell you a true story of how God sent us food. When I was a girl, my father was a minister. Once when he had to go to a meeting, he didn’t have even one cent to leave Mother with which to buy food while he was gone. The people had not paid what they had promised. Father had just enough money to buy his ticket. He told Mother he would not go and leave us without money, but Mother quoted that beautiful verse that you have learned, ‘My God shall supply all your need,’ and told Father he must go, that God would take care of us.
“We had some potatoes, a few cans of fruit, a little dried corn, and salt in the house, but the flour bin was empty. Mother did not believe in going in debt, and we bought only what we could pay for. Oh, yes, I forgot to say that we still had one loaf of bread when Father left. But when that was gone, there was no flour to make any more. Mother smiled and told us that God knew we needed flour, so we shouldn’t worry. She had us all kneel with her while she asked our heavenly Father to send us a sack of flour. When she arose, she made the rising for bread, just as if the flour bin were full. Then she said, ‘Now children, I’ve done all I can; God will do the rest.’ We all went to bed strong in faith that God would answer our prayers. I almost expected to wake up in the morning and find a sack of flour in the kitchen. When my brother came downstairs, the first thing he asked was, ‘Has God sent the flour yet?’
“Mother lifted the lid from the bread bowl and let us see how light and foamy the rising was. All it needed was the flour. We ate a scant breakfast of potatoes and salt, and then Mother knelt by the empty flour bin and praised God because He had said His children would never need to beg for bread.
“Still no flour came. Mother and I washed the dishes, and Mother started to sing the old song, ‘Oh for a faith that will not shrink.’ My little brother, who was looking out of the window, said, ‘Somebody is tying a horse to our fence.’ We children all hurried to look out, fully expecting to see the woman carry in some flour. To our great disappointment she came up the path empty handed.
“Mother invited her in, and she sat down, acting rather embarrassed and strange. She was not a Christian and never had been to church, but her daughter had been converted during the revival Father had held; and I knew Father and Mother had been praying that she and her husband might know Jesus, too.
“She talked about the weather, and kept twisting her scarf. Finally she said, ‘I want to tell you a strange thing that happened to me this morning. As I was getting breakfast, I heard a voice say, “Take Brother Hayden some flour.” I knew no one was in the kitchen but me, and I got scared. Then I heard it again. “Go take Brother Hayden some flour.” I suppose I’m a fool, but do you need flour?’
“By this time Mother was crying, and saying, ‘Praise the Lord.’ She told the woman of our prayers for flour, showed her the empty bin, and the crock of rising. The woman too then began to cry, and going to her buggy, she gave my brother a sack of flour, handed me a basket of potatoes, while the younger brother and sister carried in a jar of milk and a bucket of butter. ‘I just thought if God was telling me to take you flour, like as not you needed the butter too, so I brought it along,’ she told Mother.
“Mother kissed her, and said, ‘You look like an angel to us.’ Then she mixed her bread, put it to rise, and we held a real thanksgiving prayer meeting. Seeing how God had led her to help us so touched the woman that she gave her heart to Him that day in our house.
“She seemed to know Father had not been paid, so before he got home from the meeting, people came from all parts of his parish and paid Mother both in food and money a great deal more than they owed.”
“Was that good bread?” asked Bobby as Miss Clara finished the story.
“Indeed it was,” said Miss Clara, “it was like heavenly manna.”
My Favorite Prayer Stories, Joe L. Wheeler, ©2015, 65–67