"The Lord does."

This weekend I was reading some sermons by Clarence Jorden, who started Koinonia Farm, from which Jubilee Partners sprouted. And this passage jumped out at me, both because it's a commentary on "the birds and lilies" (which was recited for me a few days ago) and because I think it supports what I was writing about yesterday:

Suppose now this little lily that he was talking about says, "You know, I don't like it out here in this field. The farmer just drove by with a manure spreader. I want to get into a better environment. The cultural opportunities are horrible out here. So I think maybe I'm going to write to my cousin in the town and see if he can't find me an apartment and I'm going to move in there." Suppose that little lily has the free will, as we have, to determine his own conduct and can move into the city and live on the concrete. Jesus is not saying to that little lily, "Take no thought about tomorrow." It had better! It won't let God take care of it; it better take care of itself. So long as it will stay in the environment which God intended for it, God will take care of it. But when it wants to govern its own course, then it takes itself out of God's care.

This promise is given only to people who are willing to set their eyes on one object, and that is, the Kingdom of God and its righteousness. Jesus said, "You can count on it, from there on out, things will be added to you." And I can speak from experience. I believe this; I've seen it operate time and time again. In the establishment of Koinonia Farm, I remember quite well that we were supposed to pay the fellow $2500 down. Martin England, who was a missionary under the American Foreign Mission Society to Burma, and I started it together. We agreed on the common purse and I had the idea that Martin was loaded. I don't know why I should think that, he being an American Baptist missionary, but he talked about, "Let's do this and let's do that," and I said, "Yeah, let's do" and I thought he had the money. And so I said, "Let's do this and let's do that" and he said, "Yeah, let's do" and when we finally pooled our common assets, we had $57.13. We were three weeks from the time we had agreed to pay $2500 down! To make a long story short, we put down that $2500. A fellow brought it to us and said the Lord had sent him with it. I didn't question him—we took it right quick before the Lord changed his mind.

Years later, a newspaper reporter came out there and asked, "Who finances this project?"

Well, all along, folks who had helped us said that the Lord had sent them, so I said to this newspaper reporter, "The Lord does."

"Yeah," he said, "I know. But who supports it?"

I said, "The Lord."

"Yeah, I know," he said, "but who, who, who, uh, who—you know what I'm talking about. Who's back of it?"

I said, "The Lord."

He said, "But what I mean is, how do you pay your bills?"

I said, "By check."

"But," he said, "I mean—hell, don't you know what I mean?"

I said, "Yeah, friend, I know what you mean. The trouble is you don't know what I mean!"