There is a story told by a woman who was grocery shopping with her preschooler. She said, “My little boy asked, ‘Mama, can we buy a cantaloupe?’ He was gazing longingly over the beautiful fruit display in the grocery store. His innocent question turned like a knife in me. A fruit we all enjoyed seemed the utmost luxury in light of our meager checkbook balance. I had carefully made the grocery list to fit the money we had until the end of the month. Cantaloupe wasn’t part of the plan. But I did notice that two of the items I had intended to buy were on sale, and the savings happened to equal the cost of a cantaloupe. I sighed, and said, ‘I guess we have enough.’ ‘Oh, Mama,’ my son cheered, ‘enough is a lot!’”
Provision is a wonderful thing to experience in life. Enough certainly is a lot. In fact, many a smile is generated by simply remembering that, by definition, we never need more than enough. However, a unique thing about the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is that he often provides “immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine” (Ephesians 3:20 MSG).
Abraham and Sarah could not imagine having a child in their old age, but God provided immeasurably more than they imagined in Isaac. The Israelites could not imagine crossing the Red Sea and escaping the Egyptians, but God provided immeasurably more than they imagined in their escape route through parted waters. The woman caught in adultery likely could not imagine escaping punishment, yet God provided immeasurably more than she imagined in the complete forgiveness offered by Jesus Christ. The beggar at the temple gate sought money from Peter and John, yet God provided immeasurably more than the man imagined in the form of his physical healing.
These Scriptural snapshots, among many others we could view, provide strong evidence that not only does God often provide “immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine,” it’s His nature to do so. David so beautifully captures this aspect of God’s nature when he says, with such simple elegance, “My cup overflows” (Psalm 23:5).
It’s like God to not only fill our cup, but to overflow it. It’s His nature to give us immeasurably more than enough peace in distress, immeasurably more than enough strength in trial, immeasurably more than enough trust in danger, immeasurably more than enough faith to believe, immeasurably more than enough joy in adversity…in general, immeasurably more than enough provision for our need. This, in spite of the fact that all we really need is enough, because enough is a lot!