How Could We Pay Our Rent?

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“How Could We Pay Our Rent?” Liahona, Jan. 2010, 40

How Could We Pay Our Rent?

Douglas Arévalo, Costa Rica

A year and a half after my wife, Rebeca, and I married, the company I worked for closed. Suddenly I found myself unemployed.

Rather than look to be hired by someone else, I felt prompted to start my own company. I knew that this challenge could be a complicated one, so I turned to Heavenly Father to confirm what I had felt. Prayer played a vital role in that initial decision and has continued to be crucial since.

In August 2003 I started my own company doing painting, gardening, landscaping, and maintenance work. Things aren’t always easy when you have your own company, especially when starting out. At the beginning of one month, Rebeca and I needed to pay rent for our home. We didn’t have a penny. So one morning we prayed that we might somehow obtain the money we needed. Later that day I was hired for a job that paid enough to cover our rent.

A month after I started my company, the stake president asked me to meet with him. Soon I was called to be the bishop of our ward. I realized that Heavenly Father had opened a way for me to accept and fulfill this calling. With my other job, I would not have had the necessary time for members of the ward and for my own family. But because I have my own company, I have a flexible schedule. I have been home for important events in my family’s life, such as when my children were born and started walking and talking. In addition, my wife and I have been able to serve in the San José Costa Rica Temple. These opportunities, which came because we had responded to promptings and sought direction in prayer, have tied us together.

I recently resumed my university studies. When the impression came to return to school, I worried about how I could provide for my family. Two days a week I would be in the classroom, not at work. How was my family going to make it?

Again, my wife and I made this challenge a matter of prayer, and the Lord responded. I began receiving permanent contracts, which have made it easier for me to make up workdays I miss while at school.

In all of these experiences, we have seen the Lord keep His promise: “Ask, and ye shall receive” (3 Nephi 27:29). Prayer has been important to our family’s development and improvement. We have seen and felt that when we turn to the Lord, He blesses us. We know that He knows us by name, and we can ask Him for whatever we need.