Wednesday, August 6, 2008

When Words Won't Work

Words are an art form for me. Not so much lately, but when I am not too busy to breathe, words are my art. I have wanted to write something about our move lately, but the words won't work. I read something today, and it helped me see a way that I can explain what my heart knows and my tongue cannot seem to express.

Home is, in many ways, linked to something concrete. For some it's a city, for some a country, for some a building, for some people. Although I firmly understand that this is not my home, and I agree with Hebrews 11:

  All these people were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance. And they admitted that they were aliens and strangers on earth. People who say such things show that they are looking for a country of their own. If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had opportunity to return. Instead, they were longing for a better country—a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them.

I also know that in other ways we have to build a home for ourselves and our families in order to be effective in our community. 

In that sense, I have found home. This city, this church, this house are home. My husband and my children are here with me, and it's home.

But, I have a problem with some words I have often heard this week: "God has blessed you with this house." is where words won't work.  

I am convinced that the Lord has had His hand intricately, intimately involved in our life...down to the details. I hated our house in Arrowhead at first for many reasons. It turned out to be the perfect home for us since it was so close to the high school and because it had rental income with the apartment.  I hate NOTHING about this house. I absolutely love it. The layout is ideal, the spaces are interesting, large and light. The bedrooms are good sizes, the bathtub is fantastic, and the yard is a major added bonus. If I could pick a kitchen counter, I would pick black granite. If I could pick a garage for Dan, this would be the one. If we had to choose a dream feature, it would be a pool. Down to the detail, the Lord has provided.

Down to the detail, He also provided for us in our dark hours nearly 2 years ago. As personally perfect as this home is for us, so also was the trial He laid before us and walked us through. We needed compelling reason to leave. We loved our life in Arrowhead and could have stayed forever. It took compelling, heartwrenching reasons for us to leave. We needed 6 months of waiting for escrow to close. Our savings ran down to the last penny and we had to trust HIM when we could not trust our self made back up. We needed a year with my parents. We grew closer with them and tighter as a family even as we struggled to be 4 adults in one home.  We needed to meet people we met because our comfort zone broke down as we lived what we believed in the lives of other people. We needed to go through a year of interviewing. We gained confidence and an unwillingness to go somewhere we knew we could not serve God to our fullest as we turned down jobs we thought we needed. We needed to not have the security of a job until the last moment, for in the waiting we found peace not in circumstances but in the Lord alone. 

The trials of the past 2 years are God's blessing every bit as much as our new home. In fact, I firmly say they are more so. He loves us so much He walked us through dark days of deep hurt, insecurity and discouragement. 

I thank God for this house. Believe me when I tell you that although we have always made wise financial decisions, we were not savvy enough to buy low, sell high, and buy low. Those are not circumstances we planned for nor could we manufacture them. So God alone gets the praise for the way things have worked out. But He also gets the praise for the lonely, hard, painful times and I thank Him for orchestrating those years so that this particular blessing is even sweeter, yet possess no hold on me. 

Job 3:

17 "Blessed is the man whom God corrects;
so do not despise the discipline of the Almighty. 

18 For he wounds, but he also binds up;
he injures, but his hands also heal.

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