When times are lean…

Cainspirations by Kristi Cain, originally published February 27, 2023


Overcoming Darkness.

How are you overcoming the struggle for sustenance? Let’s journey together!

February was a busy month, but not necessarily one of plenty.

Bills and time demands have piled up.

On one hand, there have been several occasions for celebration, from the courageous leaders of black and women’s history to the warmth of Valentine’s Day to the revivals sweeping across the nation’s colleges.

But if your schedule has been anything like mine, it can be hard to lift your head up to heavenly virtues when your nose stays fastened to the grindstone.

And all too often, that’s exactly where the enemy will set his trap. When circumstances swirl around us that seem to bring nothing but “no’s” and “not enough’s,” he will stealthily nudge us into a limitation-shaped outlook I’ll call “deprivation mentality.”

Deprivation mentality is built on a mantra of if-only’s.

If only my utility bill wasn’t so high we could afford ____________.

If only I didn’t have to stay late at work because of ______________ then I’d have been able to  ______________.

If only _______ had given me the support I needed, I wouldn’t have been left in ____________ situation.

If only I was a little more appreciated. If only I had more opportunities. If only I had more money, more time.

If only, if only, if only.

Deprivation mentality is a lie that sows seeds of long-term spiritual doubt based on temporary (and often worldly) comparisons.
What we are really saying is if only God would bless us more, our lives be better. If only he would step up and show up on our terms and timeline.

If only he were worthy of our trust.

Do you see the danger here?

While deprivation mentality positions us into the stance of the loser, abundance mentality reminds us that we already have a seat at the winner’s table.

And this trap is so easy to fall into because the master of deception will always make it look so innocent. Just a little complaint. Just a little venting.

But what we are really doing when we indulge in “deprivation mentality” is to undermine the very foundation of our faith that God is for us, not against us, and he is far more capable than we to work things for our good.

And the truth is that God has not called us into a state of deprivation and loss. Like a good father, he will never neglect to feed us the spiritual food we are all really hungering for at heart.

He has already prepared a table before us of abundance. The gift of salvation, redemption, and forgiveness through the unconquerable blood of Jesus Christ. The gift of eternal citizenship in heaven. The gift of the presence of the Holy Spirit in our lives. The gift of a 24-hour hotline to heaven through the power of personal prayer. Angels charged to watch over us. Unconditional, unfailing love. Peace that passes all understanding. Our created bodies. A name that is written on the palm of his hand. Every hair that is numbered. Every act of kindness and grace that has ever been shown to us. Every single good thing.

Through his incomprehensible provision, we have more than enough to survive on. We have everything we need to overflow with the abundance of his blessings and generosity to us.

And even though our table has not yet been removed from the presence of our enemy, the path to victory can be a simple matter of what we choose to focus on.

While “deprivation mentality” positions us into the stance of the loser, “abundance mentality” reminds us that we already have a seat at the winner’s table.

And if we can be mindful to avoid the traps of distraction, and take time every day to consider what the winning side has already served up to us, then we will never have any reason to feel deprived.

So my prayer for you this month, as we walk through the season of Lent is that we can strive to replace a lens of deprivation with one of abundance so that our cups of grace can overflow into a spiritually-starved world.


Don’t make me do all the talking – I’d love to hear from you!

  • What has helped you count your blessings when resources fall short?
  • Are there any verses that remind you of God’s promises for your life?
  • Do you want to hear about anything else? Any prayer requests?

Just shoot me an email – don’t be shy! And I promise to reply!

Want to know your divine calling? Find out with my “Discover Your Destiny” Quiz!


Check out these awesome photos from readers like you!

PHOTO CREDITS (top to bottom, left to right): “Watts Bar Waters” by Trey Sullins, Watts Bar Lake, Tennessee; “Naples Nightfall” by Scott Wilkins, Naples Botanical Gardens, Florida; “Good News Proclaimed (Luke 4:14-30)” by Anthony Wade Smith, Mount Precipice, Nazareth (where crowds drove Jesus after his first sermon); “Royal Treatment” by Lauren Brandenburg, The Kentucky Castle; and “Snow-Tipped Juniper,” by Abigail Falanga, Rio Ranch, New Mexico.

Want to share your “Beauty in Today” picture or inspirational musings? Shoot me an email and you just might be featured in my next issue!

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Thanks for visiting with us today! I hope I’ve helped you feel encouraged! – Kristi

Want to join my Cainspirations family of heroes? Click here!


Work looks a lot like play for Kristi Cain and includes freelance writing for Crosswalk, inspirational blogging, writing fantastical stories of Christian fiction, teaching English to teens, and being able to say, “I’m a former journalist.” Home is nestled in the Smoky Mountain foothills with her husband and teenage children. If you ever want a little encouragement in your day, check out her newsletter. Hop over to her website for her latest happenings and join her Facebook group, a fun, faith-based community.

Cain’s life experiences and faith journey have lent her the lens through which she shapes stories of unlocking the light of destiny out of darkness. Through her writing, she hopes to encourage people to understand that the difficult places in life can be the very ingredients that shape the greatest destinies.

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Published by Author Kristi Cain

Author - Teacher - Encourager Kristi is a wife, mother, inspirational blogger, Crosswalk contributor, and crafter of fantastical stories of Christian fiction.

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