Gratituesday: He even cares about the groceries

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Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will
drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than
food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?

Matthew 6:25-27

God is so good…

I am continually amazed at the ways that His providential hand shows in so many of the "little" areas of life. On Saturday, I decided to get a whole bunch of grocery shopping and errands out of the way, to give my husband peace and quiet in the house to work on his own Getting Things Done system.

For the last year or two, I have made a conscious effort to commit both my grocery budget and my shopping days to the Lord, asking Him to help me wisely steward what I have been given, to bless my efforts and to provide for our family's needs. Over and over again, He does so in abundance!

This past Saturday was no exception:

** The wonderful organic eggs that I usually get from a local farmer for a great price (because I buy his "seconds", or non-perfect looking eggs) are not available every year from about May-July. Abbie and I were purposeful about keeping our eyes open for signs in the country that said e-g-g-s (thought we'd add in a little reading practice, too :). On the way to get our raw milk share, we happened to pass a sign for Free Range Eggs $3.00, which is a great price. Perfect! I've found my egg supplier for the next few months!

** My budget was feeling crunched this month, due to needing to do a fairly big order for some staples from the co-op I order from. I had worked my shopping trip out very carefully, with a budget for each different store I was going to. My husband didn't know this and asked at the last minute for just a few of his favorite treats from some of those stores. I smiled and said sure, inwardly wondering how on earth I was going to make it work. Even with the treats, I managed to come in slightly under budget at 3 out of 4 stores, making room for the amount I went over at the last store.

** Since we use so many bananas in our morning smoothies, I try to buy them when they are ripe and discounted, since I'm only going to freeze them anyways. Sometimes I will go weeks and weeks without finding any that are discounted, but this time I found 3 bagfuls! 

** The biggest thing: I've been saving up for about 6-8 months to purchase a front portion of grass-fed beef from my local meat shop. I was so disappointed last week when I called to double check that I had enough to place an order, and was informed that fronts never come in less than 150-180 lbs, which which was far above the 100 lbs I had been expecting to buy.

While in my meat shop purchasing some chicken and turkey, I casually asked the owner whether it was true that I couldn't get a front for less than 150 lbs, as I was hoping for more like 100 lbs. His face lit up and he said that he had just the cow for me, right there in the back of the shop. He went back and weighed it while we took a potty detour, and when I came back he told me triumphantly that it weighed almost exactly 100 lbs!!!

I quickly calculated the money that I had saved and the price per lb, and realized that I was within $4 of the cost, before tax. I've also been saving up our cans and bottles for the last few months, intending to bring them in for a refund. With the recycling refund, I should have basically exactly enough to cover the meat, with tax. I wouldn't be surprised if I end up within pennies, because sometimes God is just so precise that way. :) 

Suffice it to say, I'm just so grateful for a God who not only cares about all of the big things, but who sees to it that our family is so richly provided for as we attempt to make careful use of the finances and health that He has entrusted to us!

Join in Gratituesday over at Heavenly Homemakers!

Do you have any stories to share of how God provides for your family, down to the smallest details? I would love to hear them!

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  1. wow – what an amazing testimony to God’s faithfulness. He does care about even the tiniest details of our lives — like grocery shopping — and that’s amazing. Thanks for sharing!

  2. I love that verse I have seen days where I was not sure if all would get to eat enough or if we would run out since we started with just a little but somehow it made so much. I know that God has touched my pot before just stretching it so that there is enough for all to get full

  3. I need to put more trust in our lord that my life is more than just what I expect it to be. Thanks for the thoughtful blog.

  4. WOW, what a great story! He is so in CONTROL isn’t he! (seem like this topic keeps coming up in my life lately… HMMM!?!?!)
    Either way, I am so glad everything worked out for you! Here is praying it just keeps working out like that every month!

  5. It is so wonderful how things work out that way. I do have to say that for me I really appreciate this passage is the reason why Jesus is telling us not to be anxious about what we will be eating or drinking is to keep on seeking the kingdom (vrs33) (the same kingdom he taught us to pray about in the Lords prayer) and his righteousness and all these other things will be added to you. This kingdom is what will help put all this badness in the world away(Dan2:44).

    Thank you so much for all your hard work in this blog. I have been learning so much about different things. I have been thinking about buying free range beef. My question is what do you mean about the “front portion” of the cow? Is this better?

  6. I try to always ask God’s blessing when I’m spending money and I am floored over and over how faithful He is. How awesome is our God when He loves us enough to even care about our grocery bill?

  7. I just experienced His help in finding food too! Every time I shop I ask for the Lord’s help to find the best deals and keep me in budget. He is so faithful! I found lots of clearance produce that was still good. Finding deals like this really help me stretch my budget to the max!

    It’s so wonderful to experience our Father’s care.

  8. It seems amazing to me how God can truly stretch our food budget when I take it to him in prayer. We have a very small income, and it always seems that we never have enough grocery money for the whole month. But this last month I prayed that God would stretch our food money to last the whole month, and it was the first month that we still had plenty of meats, canned goods, and fresh fruits and veggies. And I spent less than I had set aside! The Lord is good!!!

  9. I love posts like this! Recently my husband has switched jobs due to his father’s company being aquired and with it had to take a 10% pay cut. Since I stay at home and we have two kids, that was a huge chunk to us, because we are putting all our extra money to pay off our debt. With that being said, we went to a ‘cash budget’ using different envelopes for things like “gas”, “grocery”, etc. and even though we have REALLY decreased our grocery budget per week, we’ve ‘somehow’ 🙂 been able to stay under it every week!

    Sarah M

  10. Isn’t He good? I am the same way about shopping and am always so delighted at how He provides. I love it when I decline something at full price and then turn around and find the exact same thing just “waiting” for me at a thrift shop, sometimes even new with the price tag still on it for 1/5th of the price! Makes me giddy =)

  11. hey Stephanie, would you mind letting me know what you paid per pound and if it was bone in or not. I’m pricing it out and I know we live in the same general area.
    Tara V

  12. Wow…thanks for your story of God’s faithfulness. He always seems to work things out, doesn’t he?

  13. That’s great and a wonderful reminder that nothing is too small. I frequently forget to put *everything* into God’s hands. Even when I hear many stories about how He is in all the little details.

  14. Shannon, there is nothing nutritionally better or different about the front of a cow. Basically, that is where you find the most utilitarian cuts of meat- roasts, ground meat and stewing meat. At my store, buying the front is much cheaper than buying a mix or buying the back (that’s not what it’s really called- maybe it’s hind? LOL! I can’t remember the term!). I prefer these kind of cuts because they go a lot farther in my cooking than a whole bunch of steaks, ribs, etc.

    Tara, I buy my meat from Ennis Farm Meats. For a front, it’s $2.09 a lb, which is one of the best prices I’ve seen anywhere. It’s very fresh, too. When you call to order, they place the order with the farmer and then choose a (still living) cow for you, butcher it, and package it, and call you to pick it up. If you want more of a mix of cuts, you can pay closer to $2.50 a lb, or closer to $3 a lb for the rear portion, with the better steak cuts, etc. If you’ve never checked this place out, do!!! 🙂

  15. Tara, sorry, the rest of your question… yes it’s with bone. But, I will get all the soup bones, as well as some ribs, and also any of the fat for rendering, plus possibly the organs like the liver (though occasionally those are disposed of because most customers don’t want them). So it really does work out well!

  16. Amazing. I’m not surprised at the Lord’s faithfulness at all. HE is so good.

  17. Stephanie,

    Fabulous testimony. I am always curious what other families who try to eat nutritiously actually end up spending. Is it prying too much to ask your monthly food budget? I have one preschooler and a baby, and we’re at about 300 dollars, although it’s been terribly hard to stay within budget the last 6 months or so! I borrow from other categories, most months.

    Thanks for a great post!

  18. Katie, I am actually writing a post detailing how my grocery budget works, so you’ll have your curiosity satisfied soon! 🙂

  19. A while ago I made a little list of some things I wanted to buy when I got some extra money- everything from a car, braces for my husband, etc. all the way down to a jar of sugar scrub. Sugar scrub is something I really enjoy but it’s quite indulgent so I hadn’t purchased it. Well, recently my friend invited me to a new spa’s open house, and they had a little drawing for some freebies. My name was drawn and guess what I won- you got it- a jar of sugar scrub!!! It has been something that has really really touched me heart, knowing that the Lord knows exactly what I want (not just need, but want!) and he is pleased to provide it for me.

  20. that is wonderful!!

    I saw in the comments how you are writing a post about how your budget works…I can’t wait to see. I do think everyone will be different though since prices vary due to where people live, Canada vs. USA and even rural/more isolated vs. city etc…

    God provided for me last summer when my cucumbers (and most everyone else’s) didn’t produce…but my husband LOVES cucumber relish. I had to tell him I wasn’t going to be able to make some…but I prayed about if I could find some somewhere (although, I’ll be honest, I wondered if God cared). A few hours later we went out on a walk, and my neighbour a few houses down was picking something in his garden. I said hi and asked him how he was doing, he said he was picking cucumbers, did I want any, he had too many (which is wierd, since even the farmers didn’t get many last year due to wet weather). I happily took them (and a few other things he gave me too!) and there was just enough to make my husband some relish. 🙂

  21. It is such a blessing to be thankful for how God cares for the little details! Yesterday I was at my organic co-op picking up milk and veggies. I had forgotten that several weeks ago I had ordered raw cheddar cheese to try for the first time. Yes, it was in, did I want 2.5 lbs like I had ordered, or a full 5 lb. block? 2.5 lbs really won’t last long in our family of 11. The amount of cash in my wallet would be the deciding factor… but I had just returned something at a store. I had a little more than enough to get the full block! I was just so grateful – the little shiver of happiness had nothing to do with how *I* *happened* to have the right amount of $ – God sovereignly ordains ALL our lives! To Him be the glory! 🙂

    Love your site!

  22. Stephanie.. thats great about the front of beef.. a farm where we buy our “2nds” of eggs 2.5 dozen for $2 from also sells beef.. I was able to get an entire side of organic beef for $2.50 a lb.. and alot of the steaks I end up cutting up into stew meat etc.. although I do save some for my husband.. he does love a good steak.

  23. This is so true! God provides in every single aspect of our lives. We have seen it in my husband having to go in for a flight physical when we didn’t have much money and the insurance wouldn’t cover it. Literally that afternoon, a check from AFLAC came in the mail that was exactly the $65 we needed for it. Just in the last month or so, a friend gave us about five pounds of coffee that he had roasted himself. And it was wonderful coffee! This meant we didn’t have to buy coffee for about two months, and that was with giving some to another friend as well.

    We pray about good deals and our budget as well. God has been so gracious to us there, we have gotten organic bananas for less than the price for standard bananas, we get free greens for our chickens, we get deals like $0.10 a pound for onions, $0.14 a pound for organic apples. He is so good!

    We’ve had an excruciatingly rough time recently. A priest we are friends with who is a chaplain in the Army was running a marriage and family retreat and thought of us. He was able to get us in, all expenses paid, including all meals, two adjoining rooms at a fancy resort, child care if we wanted it, his daughter watched our children in our rooms at night, so we could go to the spa and my husband’s boss let him take the time off, even though we have used up all of his vacation and personal days, because he knew what had been going on. We couldn’t have afforded it at all, and God gave us that rest for free.

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