Tuesday, January 27, 2009

God and Printers

Quite a few years ago Dave was given a brand new Brother Laser Printer. It was wonderful and made the most beautiful copies. But...one day the toner ran out and when we went to price it -- YIKES!! -- over $80.00!! Time passed -- lots of time passed -- and because we had an hp Deskjet before the incredible laser, and because you could purchase cartridges for about $25.00 we never bothered with the Brother and it's pricey cartridge.

About two weeks ago the $25.00 cartridge ran dry. Dave and I have revamped our living style which simply means - no cash - no purchase. God has been working me over -- (and I REALLY mean that) -- about living debt free and trusting Him for our "daily bread." (Brother Durr preached a message about this about a month or so ago -- He will probably never know how much the message was for me!)

At any rate -- there was no cash available for the cartridge so we lived without and I began to pray for the money to purchase one. Yes, I pray about anything and everything. I was sooo tempted to buy one with a credit card -- you sort of need a printer when you are a student/teacher -- but my conscience would not let me. I was to trust my Heavenly Father for everything -- my daily bread. When He saw that I really, truly needed that cartridge He would provide. (My God SHALL SUPPLY ALL your NEED).

Well, yesterday my girls "begged" me to take them to the Goodwill. After a good day of homeschooling we headed off. I was determined not to purchase anything that wasn't a genuine need therefore I didn't do too much browsing, therefore avoiding temptation. I distinctly remember making the decision to make one quick trip through the "stuff aisles". A particular box caught my eye -- on any other day I know I would have completely missed it. Yes, the box pictured above.
Now you have to understand, I am totally incompetent and uneducated when it comes to anything on the tech side, no matter how simple. But I KNEW this was the right cartridge. I called home to confirm it would fit but I already KNEW it would. A thousand questions raced through my mind -- Should I spend the $9.00? Was it a waste? Would the printer work after 3-4 years of no use? Do cartridges expire? Had this box been opened and repackaged? Was there ink still inside?...
The manager at the store was more than helpful when I asked about the possibility of returning it if I found that it didn't work or had been opened or even expired. She even went to google to get more info.!! They opened the box and we discovered it was still sealed in the silver packaging. I knew for sure it was mine and I wasn't wasting money.

So I got it home...it appeared to be the wrong size! How?!
Today is a glorious snow day -- a few extra hours available. I set to work on the printer, asking God to help me figure it out.
First, the cartridge did fit! Second, I had just purchased the top of the line for this model and it was good for 6,000 pages! I have yet to see what they retail for.

But...when I printed the first page this is what I got.

Obviously, that would never work!!!
So, I began to pray again. "Dear God, I have no idea how to fix this printer. You led me to the cartridge, please lead me now."

Say what you want -- I knew to go get rags and alcohol. Perhaps I vaguely remember a certain smell when they come to fix the copier at school. Who knows. Sooo .. I gathered my equipment and went to work cleaning the inside of the printer. A picture clued me that there is a glass lense that needed to be swiped clean.

Copy after copy the mess remained! I was wasting toner and paper!! "Please Lord, help me!!"
After reasoning how the paper goes through, I decided that it must not be the shell of the printer but there must be a roller or something that has toner smeared over it. UH-HUH!! There is!!!
After try after try, chipped nails from turning tiny wheels, toner on hands and clothing, LOTS of patience (at least for me - the one who hates "fix it" projects) and prayer I almost had it. By now I had been working for over an hour. But there were still a few smears and the printing was inconsistent - sometimes almost a clean page other times horrible.
"Please Lord -- show me what to do!!"

Q-TIPS!! There was one spot I hadn't cleaned well. Clean there again - use Q-tips!

"Alright Lord, I have done literally all I can think of to do. Unless you show me somthing else I am finished. You didn't lead me to that cartridge for me to have smeary pages to hand in to my professor. I need clean, white, consistent pages. This is my last try."

This is exactly what came out of that printer!!
I gulped back tears -- our Almighty God -- creator of heaven and earth, who KNOWS all things - including types, styles, and working of printers ----- had just directed my thoughts and actions in the most incredible way!!!

I did not even have $25.00 for the deskjet.
He provided the top of the line for $9.00.

I had absolutely no clue how to put the cartridge in when I started much less clean it!!!

Soooo ...why do we limit God? Why do we confine Him to a box of what He can or cannot do, will or will not do????

I don't know about you but I just learned a huge lesson in the last 24 hours.
"Now unto Him who is able to exceeding, abundantly above all that we can ask or think."

P.S. It was only after the work was all done and I marveled at what had just taken place, that I took the pictures and decided to blog. Perhaps it will encourage you with what you are facing. God is enough!


Regi said...

Wow! Excellent job on cleaning the printer! Seems like I always get those types of jobs at work - I will have to raid the medical department next time for Q-tips :o) Never thought of that!

Julie said...

What an incredible story! I'm so happy for you.

Bryan and Marsha said...

Awesome!!! He does supply our needs and our wants!!! He is faithful and good!!

Andy, Dixie, and Bean said...

Thank you. I needed to hear your story.

Discount at Inkjet Cartridges said...

what is the story!
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Char said...

In response to Discount at Inkjet - whoever you are -- I still saved over $30.00, as that cartridge at that site sells for over $40.00 discounted. It was there for us and our need at our price -- that is the story.

Alanna said...

This was very encouraging! Wow!