How God Used Coupons to Set Me Free
This article was written by abusewidow, (click on link to see her blog) 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