Terry Mai
Water of Life Ministries

Paid in Full

Throughout the years in the paint business, I established a reputation of honoring my word.  If I told someone I would do something, I would fulfill it.  If I told someone I would meet them somewhere, I would be there.  If I found that the situation was not possible, I would straighten it out before the fact and not allow it to lapse with excuses or just ignore it.  After all, if we're working toward pleasing God, he honors his word and expects no less from us.  Well, I found by experience it was not the same with most builders and other sub-contractors.  It was like none of them ever did what they said that they would do.  I have come to see, however, the attitude of most people is the same, but it did not give me an excuse to be like them.  Initially, that did not appear to be fair, but I learned because I honored my word to others, and particularly toward God, he caused me to succeed over the deceit of others.  

One specific experience in l984, we were painting a new 2500 sq. ft. custom home, and some people came through examining the paint work.  Upon completion, one of the people expressed how wonderful the paint work looked, and he would like us to paint his new house.  I didn't need the flattery, but I did appreciate the job offer.  I mention the flattery only because many times this attitude was followed by other deceitful practices, and this was no exception.  Upon questioning about the job, I was told the house, although larger in size, was very similar in style to the present house we were painting.   However, after the agreement and acceptance of the job, I soon realized alternate procedures were needed and more work was involved.  Further, the builder began to make demands outside the boundaries not originally discussed in our agreement, but nothing was in writing, and I was already committed.  My thought was, "Whatever happened to a man's word?"  Inside, I really wanted to tell the man what he could do with his house (not nice), and I wanted to quit.  However, I knew that was not the will of God, nor overcoming.  Besides, if I quit, I realized I would meet up with the same situation, probably worse, down the road, and I didn't need that.  So, I just prayed that I would not enter into temptation, and God would come to our aid.  Hebrews 2:18 says,

"For in that he himself hath suffered being tempted, he is able to succour (come to the aid) them that are tempted."  

God began to move, and the builder agreed reluctantly to pay for some extras, but it still brought us short.  Then God said to ask our wives to help us, and God even sent Doyle to assist also, and we were victorious to finish the job!  Praise God!   Except this is not the end of the story. 

Remember, I began the testimony about development of a reputation with people.  Because my word was honored toward God, it was accepted with most people.  With other builders it was understood upon completion of a paint job, I would receive full pay, and upon completion of the house, I would return to touch up marks that occurred with the finish of the house.  However in this instance, the builder held back several hundred dollars to make sure I would return.  Well, I returned and completed the touch-up, but the builder didn't show.  I tried to find him, but it was as though he had vanished.  Actually, his intent was not to pay me, but we completed our end of the agreement, and God knew it.  After about two weeks, I heard God say one day, "Go get your money!"  Well, I knew the subdivision of houses (several hundred) where he lived, but I didn't know the exact house.  So, I decided to go and believe God would show me.  As I arrived at the housing addition, I heard God say, "Turn here!", then "Turn here!", etc, and finally "Stop!"  My mind said, "You're nuts", but I thought "What have you got to lose?  Besides, I believe this is God!"   I rang the doorbell, and the builder was shocked when he opened the door and saw me standing there.  He exclaimed, "How did you find me?  I've been gone to California for ten days and just arrived home twenty minutes ago!"  Well, God knew and waited to tell me to go until that day.  I didn't tell him, but I was almost as amazed as he was.  He quickly wrote me a check just to get rid of me, but I didn't care because I got what God sent there to get.  God is in the business of miracles, and he had just performed one for me and caused me to completely overcome unto salvation.   That is Paid In Full!!

I was just reminded here how God honored his word when he sent Jesus, and Jesus paid the full price for our sins when he died, was buried, and rose again the third day.  Paul says in II Corinth. 5:15,

..that we should therefore not live unto ourselves, but unto him. 

God will always pay in full if we obey him.

There was another builder for whom I painted, and actually, he attended this ministry.  God blessed him and sold all of his houses that I painted during a three year period.  Then he began to question some things God told the ministry to do, and he began to try to get me involved with his unbelief.  God continued to strengthen me to tell him the truth, but he rejected it.   As a result of rejecting God's word, he began to lose money, lost his own home, lost another house that he owned, and ended his business in bankruptcy.  During the entire time, however, he paid me in full for my work.  In fact, I later learned from other contractors that I was the only sub-contractor who was paid in full from over 20 other sub-contractors he had used!!  I thank God that obedience brings blessings, and I thank God for his grace and mercy on our lives!  After all, when we obey God in word and deed, he always Pays In Full!!

biography written by Kathryn Currier
Mai slide show
Songs Composed
by Terry Mai
sung by Terry:
sung by Sweet 16:
Original songs are written by Terry Mai and © under Water of Life Ministries. They are not for profit or resale, but for ministry purposes only.

Water of Life Ministries PO Box 861327 Plano, TX 75086-1327 terrym@terrymai.com