The Ten-Percent Solution

from Gloria

When I had the red carpet laid throughout the house, I thought we’d live there the rest of our lives. “Resale value” never occurred to me. Three years later, to my astonishment and dismay, we were getting a divorce. My husband wanted to dissolve everything, divide it in half, and start over. So my lovely home went on the market.

My second daughter was still in college. Her father felt she was old enough to take care of herself; I wanted to help her finish school. I figured it all out to the penny, including how much I had to get for the house.

“Not a chance,” the realtor said, “especially with that red carpet.”

“Someone will come along who loves that carpet as much as I do, and will pay what we are asking,” I told him. I was so confident that I put what was now my half of the monthly mortgage onto my credit card. I had no other way to pay it, but I would never have accumulated such a debt if I hadn’t had faith that God would provide.

And He did. The first person that came to see the house, in the first week it was for sale, loved the carpet and bought the house for the price I needed.

My daughter and I got a small apartment near her college, but no matter how many times I added up the figures, I was still short one hundred dollars a month (which was a lot more money in those days). I had reached the top of my pay scale at work, so there was no hope of a raise there.

For years I had tithed ten percent to my church, and for the first time it crossed my mind, “Maybe I can’t afford to tithe.”

Remembering the realtor and how my faith had proved true, I answered myself emphatically, “You can’t afford not to tithe.” Addressing God, I said, “You are just going to have to help me.”

The next month the pay scale at work was changed and I got a fifty dollar raise. The month after that we got another fifty dollar cost-of-living increase.

I’ve never worried about or been short of money since.

All my life I’ve had a close relationship with God. I talk to Him about everything. When my husband left, my world shattered into tiny pieces. I was forced to turn to God in a way I didn’t know was possible. What I had thought of as a close relationship reached depths of understanding I didn’t know were there.

At the time of the divorce I suffered intensely. “What happens to us in life,” Sister Gyanamata (an advanced disciple of Paramhansa Yogananda) counseled, “doesn’t matter. All that matters is what we become through what we experience.” Looked at in this way, I can only think of the divorce as a blessing from God—perhaps the greatest spiritual blessing I have ever received.