How God Used Coupons to Set Me Free
This article was written by abuse widow, (click on link to see her blog, click here to read the original post) an abuse survivor and reader of ACFJ. Many thanks to her for sharing this part of her story with all of us.
God used coupons to set me free!
One of the main reasons women stay in abusive marriages is because they cannot afford to leave. I faced this same problem myself. I desperately wanted to get out and away from my abuser. I had left once before, but made the mistake of believing the lie that he had changed and it was safe to return. The worst part about returning was the fact that now he knew I had the physical and emotional strength to leave, but he still had a way to keep me. He knew I couldn’t leave if I couldn’t afford to go, especially with five children in tow!
God always makes a way though. Through time, prayer and patience He revealed that way to me.
Therefore the LORD waits to be gracious to you, and therefore he exalts himself to show mercy to you. For the LORD is a God of justice; blessed are all those who wait for him. –Isaiah 30:18
I went to the grocery store one day, as I do most days, to pick up a few things we needed. Since I had a large family to feed and a husband that was not working, I had cut out some coupons to help keep the cost down. I was distracted at the store by kids, that were very much in need of a nap, and I forgot to hand the cashier my coupons. She told me that if I took my receipt and coupons to the customer service desk they would take care of it. I did as she suggested and they gave me cash back. It was a small trip, so I only had $12 in coupons, but that $12 was a gift from the Lord and He opened my eyes to my way out.
I continued to shop as I always did, but I would take my coupons to the customer service desk and get cash back. I was always very honest with the coupons (never take advantage of a gift from God! Be patient and He will provide). I took time to plan my meals and such around the coupons I had so I could use the most coupons (and get the most money back). I hid the cash and saved it up. My abuser never knew I was using coupons. To him, I was spending the money on groceries. He could look at the receipt and it all matched up (plus he was enjoying all the new recipes I was coming up with to make the most of the coupons), but I was slowly but steadily saving up to be able to leave.
It did take time, but God worked it all out in His timing. I actually left sooner than I had planned, but God made it all work; not that there weren’t struggles, but He saw me through each one.
I hope that maybe this will be an idea that can help other women make a plan to leave, or maybe just open eyes to see how God does care and will provide a way.
The salvation of the righteous is from the LORD; he is their stronghold in time of trouble. The LORD helps them and delivers them; he delivers them from the wicked and saves them, because they take refuge in him. –Psalm 37:39-40
- Posted in: Supporting victims
- Tagged: getting free, guest post, protecting victims, survivors' stories
Abusewidow, I am encouraged by your resourcefulness. It’s amazing how you took a hectic situation (shopping and forgetting the coupons) and turned it into a tool to move forward in your life, away from your abuser. You are wonderfully in tune with God who dearly loves you and your children.
What an encouraging story!
I do it a little different. I get cash back using my charge card when I shop. It doesn’t show up on my statement as a separate amount.
Right now I’m using the money to tithe, replace broken items around the house and the rest I put into an account I opened in my name.
All money that comes to me (rebates, refunds, gifts, repayments) goes into my account too. I’m also quietly selling stuff online that I no longer want which also goes into that account.
Thank you for sharing this encouraging testimony from Abusewidow. I so appreciate the call to be patient with God’s timing. He has amazing ways to rescue His loved ones and I agree with Seeing Clearly that Abusewidow followed God’s providence that day.
When my abusive H and I separated he cut me off all financial support thinking I would then come back to and beg him after some time. A standard military tactic is to cut off supply to cripple, to lead / force another to capitulate / recant / give up. Money to an abuser is a means of manipulative persuasion, a material embargo on top of an emotional embargo.
God has been providing for me in ways I could never have imagined, through benefits, coupons, cash, food, clothes, etc. through people -some friends, some unknown-, institutions. Most of it is from non Christians…
I am longing for financial deliverance, it’s been a long hardship but I’ve learned a lot, and I am encouraged at reading this post that it will come at its right time.
What a wonderful story! On the comment from Annie, Cash back does show up on a grocery store receipt and on my bank statement it will show the purchase amount and the cash back amount on the statement for the total deducted on the transaction. I wanted to point that out for people to be careful if your abuser demands receipts or bank statements.
One way I saved money was by buying and return items for cash at Costco.
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Thanks for sharing that. I’m sorry that you lived under such oppression (I did too so I understand) and I am so glad that you got out and that you give the glory to God!!
AbuseWidow, just the name you’ve used here speaks to me! Yeshua told me a year or so ago that I am a widow due to my h’s abusive behaviors. I am coming out of the fog more now…was very depressed recently thinking I just have to accept the situation. But little by little He is showing me He wants my son and I to be free. Thanks so much. God bless you and your children. I have a bunch too which is part of why I stayed so long. But soon it will be just my son and I (he has special needs) and I need to get him away from this situation. Thank you for sharing.