I am not a coffee drinker. I have drunk it and if it’s weak enough and has some stevia in it and perhaps a flavor (Butternut Rum or Highlander Grogg were tolerable) I can do it for a calorie-free option. In my previous life, many moons ago, I was married to someone else who periodically decided that due to me being overweight, I should not have chai. Other times he was fine with it.
I had even had my naturopathic doctor test me with my chai and he said it was neutral. Neither good or bad for me so “Enjoy your chai.” Yay!
I usually only have one mug in the morning while I spend time in God’s Word. When my children were little we lived in a tiny 700-square-foot mobile home. One day I noticed the chai supply was dwindling so I ordered more. At that time there was no Amazon. I ordered from the distributer and got a discount when I bought in bulk. The order arrived in a cardboard box. My husband at the time came in and put the box in the kitchen.
“What is this?” he asked.
“Chai. We were running low so I ordered some more,” I said, curious as to why this was an issue. Note: sometimes he enjoyed a cup of chai too.
“You shouldn’t be having sugar. It’s not good for you. I’m taking this and putting on the dryer. You cannot have it.”
That is what he did. The box, unopened, sat on top of the dryer. I did let him know I didn’t appreciate being spoken to that way. And I prayed.
I wanted to submit to my husband even if he was being nasty and unreasonable. I told God that I didn’t need chai to be happy or survive. I told God I didn’t want to make chai an idol in my life. I also prayed: “God, if it is okay for me to drink chai, have my husband bring that box back to the kitchen, open it up and fill the container.”
Odd request right? And very specific. However, I’d seen God do amazing things and was convinced that God was capable. I needed to trust him and not react out of my own hurt feelings or rebel against my controlling husband which would only make a bad marriage worse.
A week went by and on a Friday, the container I kept my chai in was finally empty. I washed it out and set it to dry on the counter. I told God I was fine and would trust Him whether I got to drink chai or not. I was at peace with this.
That afternoon my husband stormed into the trailer and came to the kitchen. He opened the cupboard where I normally kept the plastic container filled with chai. He turned. “Where’s the chai?” he demanded.
“It’s empty. Here’s the container.” I picked it up, totally dry now and put the lid on it.
“Didn’t you buy more?” he asked. How could he forget his explosion about this?
“Yes, I did.” I answered, staying calm.
“Well, where is it?” he demanded. He was going to lose his temper!
“On the dryer in the box it came in.”
He rushed down the hallway, grabbed the box, put it on the counter, opened it and then took out a bag of chai, opened that, and dumped it in the plastic container. Just like I had asked God to have him do. Then he made himself a cup of chai. He left the house to go back to his office behind our home.
I never did tell my then-husband that God had used him to answer prayer. It wasn’t the first time and wouldn’t be the last when something happened in spite of my then-husband’s behaviors. It wasn’t about getting my way or proving to that man that it was acceptable for me to have a cup of chai. Or that he was wrong in seeking to control me in that manner. It was about my relationship with Jesus.
Once he was gone, I praised God for His love and care. I think I even laughed at how specific I had prayed and how identically God fulfilled my request. The LORD cares about the things we need and delights in giving them to His children. He doesn’t want to be sought just for what we can get from Him. He wants to be the most important Person in our lives. I didn’t even have a cup of chai at that moment. I saved it for the next morning when I was going to be spending time one-on-one, with the lover of my soul, my Savior, Jesus. And ever since then I remember the chai-latte-love of my God. A sweet answer to prayer and reminder that even in a painful marriage, in a crappy moldy mobile home that made me ill, with three kids and very little money – God saw me, loved me, and provided me a reminder of that in a simple cup of chai.
One of the things God instructed people to do in the Old Testament was to set up stones, monuments that were a testimony of the work God had done. I don’t need to set up a stone, but I do at times need to remind myself, and smile, that God has blessed me far beyond what I deserve. His mercy and grace are at times so overwhelming. And when life hands us the difficult stuff, or the painful memories beat us down, or the effects of someone else’s sin wounds us deeply, we can remember and recite the awesome love and faithfulness of God to ourselves.
I am married to a different man now, and he will fill my kettle at night and turn it on in the morning. When we are on vacation, he will go out of his way to make sure I have a chai tea latte even if he has to go Starbucks to get it. What a difference. A small way for him to show his love to me as well. God has been so good to me.
When have you seen God do a miracle? Big or small, it doesn’t matter. Share that with someone, or share it here so we can exalt Him who came as a baby to save us from our sins. He did all that–and more. He is worth of our praise and devotion.