My new home was beautiful! It had an open floor plan. In the living room was a fire place. The kitchen was welcoming and bright. There was an apartment in the basement we would us to serve people who need a place to live. It was in a quaint neighborhood. I would finally be able to decorate a home after 22 years of marriage! I couldn’t wait to make it our home!
There was just one problem…It was all in my mind. I had decided that this is what was going to happen, and that this was what we needed.
God began to show me that this was not what He wanted, and I was not happy! In fact, I was quite irritated with Him.
After a draining year of pouring ourselves into people, we felt like we had nothing left to give. Many people are facing financial difficulty these days, and so was the organization we work for. How would we pay our bills? We thought this might be a sign that we were supposed to move, and it seemed only logical. I guess God wasn’t thinking logically…
Week after week God provided for us. Generous people gave us gifts of money. Someone gave us a refrigerator to replace the one that was not working. Someone even bought us a new couch to replace the one that was worn out. One night some friends drove up and unloaded a car full of food to fill our freezer. As my husband helped them carry the food into our home, he was in tears. Me? I was irritated. This was not the way I was thinking God would provide! I was ready for that house I was telling you about. I thought it was time to move on.
I was longing for “my” house. Still hoping. Then came the final provision. My husband and I were offered a position where we would be working together serving in an official capacity, opening our home, serving and living life with students, AND GETTING PAID FOR IT.
My new house disappeared. I relinquished what I wanted and picked up a paint brush. Acceptance. This is where He wants us to live. This is where He wants us to serve. So I painted. As I went from one room to another, making them as fresh and new as I could make them….making this place home in my heart again. God began to give me a fresh vision for what He has me here for. He changed my heart and refreshed my spirit.
I find great joy in proclaiming His greatness and sharing about all the ways He has taken care of us.
He then began to show me the work He’d been doing in my heart through our trials. All the things I’d been asking Him to produce in my heart, He had been doing!
Like a loving Father, He was patient with me. When I was done throwing my fit, He gently said, “This is what I’ve been doing….” And He laid it all out in front of me. I am amazed. Amazed at how loving and merciful He is to me, that He has shown such grace, that He did a work in my heart even when I was kicking and screaming. Amazed by how He changed my heart and caused me to have fresh vision for serving and that He would want to work through me even though I am a foolish child.
One of my husband’s favorite verses is Psalm 37:25 (NIV) “I have been young and now am old, yet have I not seen the [uncompromisingly] righteous forsaken or their seed begging bread.” He reminds me of this regularly. He clings to God’s promises and helps me cling too. And we have both seen His promises are true.
It is a privilege to live and serve the way God wants me to serve. I do not deserve to be here. I do not deserve all I have been given. But I am very grateful.
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