A Short Story About Prayer and Overdraft Fees

A Short Story About Prayer and Overdraft Fees

My sweet Grandma! Thanks for the loan! :)

It’s funny looking back, but in 2004 I was so broke I actually borrowed $1000 from my Grandma. I never thought I’d add “Grandma” to my list of debts alongside Visa and Chase, but there she was. Poor grandma. Wait, I’m the poor one in this story.

I digress…

I had just moved to a new town (lovely Waco, Texas, sic’ em Bears!). I was still looking for a “real” job, but was waiting tables at Chili’s to make ends meet, which didn’t always happen. Long story short I incurred several overdraft fees over the course of a weekend. On top of that I was overwhelmed by my $8,500 in debt, including Grandma’s grand.

I needed help.

So where do you turn when you’re in financial trouble (besides Grandma)? The bank of course!

Because of the overdraft fees, I reasoned my best shot at getting some help was to show up at the local bank with my smiling face and beg for mercy. Here’s where it gets neat.

On the way to the bank, I literally prayed for an older “motherly” lady who loved God and had a heart for missions. I had spent two months overseas that summer and figured it would be a good connection.

I walked into the bank, signed my name on the waiting list, and took a seat.


I looked up….it was an older lady, Joyce, who I would soon find out was quite motherly. Check One.

During our conversation, I explained that I had just moved to town to get plugged into an amazing church….turns out Joyce is very involved in her church and even invited me to join them on their next prison outreach (which I did). Joyce loves God. Check Two.

(You can see where this is going right?)

Joyce’s daughter just returned from a mission trip to China. Joyce loves missions. Check Three.¬†

Not only did God completely answer my prayer, and not only did Joyce help get a few fees waived, but we developed a friendship. There were several times where I went inside the bank instead of the drive-through just to say hello (plus free coffee).

Joyce was also very encouraging, letting me know that my financial situation ($8,500 in debt at the time) wasn’t that bad. She explained that she has worked with customers who had over $50,000 in debt. In that moment I never would have dreamed that I’d eventually incur over $119,000 in debt. I often looked back on that conversation and just had to laugh (it was better than crying right?).

What’s my point?

Pray! Even for the simple things. You have not because you ask not, so ask! You don’t even know the blessings you’re missing if you’re not asking!

And stop judging yourself every time you ask for something. Most of the time our prayers are a mix of pure motives and selfish motives. If we put ourselves under a microscope every time we pray we’ll stop praying because we’re rarely going to be 100% pure in motive.¬†Just accept that your Father loves you and wants to bless you and start asking!

Having children has opened my eyes to this.

I don’t want to bless Macey because she deserves it, I want to bless her because I love her! Do you see it? Maybe you’ve made poor financial decisions and feel that you “deserve” to be in debt. So what? God doesn’t want you to be in debt, so just accept that he wants to give you good things, and he wants to set you free (in all areas, not just financially).

On the flip side, Macey never argues with me when I try to give her something. She doesn’t give me five reasons why she doesn’t deserve it or hasn’t earned it. She just receives it…and with joy! It turns out the Bible has a lot to say about “child-like faith.”

It’s hard to say it better than Jesus…”Everyone who asks receives.” (Matthew 7:8)

So what are you waiting for? Start asking!


Comments: As you were reading this post, what things were highlighted in your heart that you know you need to start asking for?

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