Monday, July 27, 2009

When the Load is Heavy

Just last week I had decided that it was time to clean out my office. I had collected way too many telephone books, pamphlets, magazines, books, and office supplies over the last year. If you'd look at my office, it would appear very tidy and clean... from a distance. What you wouldn't see is plethora of stuff hidden underneath my desk, in cabinet drawers and my office closet. Hidden but still there.

I went to the kitchen to retrieve a huge black trash bag, the 30 gallon hefty size, and returned to my office. It took about an hour to completely fill the trash bag. Through the process, I was amazed at how much stuff I had collected. Papers that were once considered very important to me where no long useful or needed. Books that I thought I'd want forever but no longer cared to keep. Pamphlets and magazines that I just had to have but were now dust collectors. Just STUFF that was taking up space.

I felt such a sense of freedom when I tied the knot on my completely full trash bag. It was as if I had shed 10 pounds of weight from my life. I went to carry the bag out to the trash but when I went to lift it up, I realized just how heavy it was. My office is in my basement, which meant I'd have to carry the bag up a long flight of stairs. This was not going to be an easy task.

As I headed for the stairway, Carson came running down the stairs to see where I had been for the last 60 minutes. When he saw me lugging the trash bag, he quickly say "Mom, let me get that for you."

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

A Good Idea vs. A God Idea - Part 2

Yesterday, I shared with you about the unexpected guests that showed up at my door the other day. It was a Realtor and potential client that were coming to view our home, which has been on the market for several months. I had no advance notice that they were coming and our home was in no way shape or form ready for this surprise showing.

After their little visit, I plopped down into my favorite chair and began asking God a bunch of questions. I sat and prayed for a while then pulled out my bible and began to read some scripture verses that had become my favorites over the last couple of weeks.

I started to think about all the stories I had recently heard from friends and relatives who were trying to sell, refinance or buy a new home. I wondered if we would be able to get financing since Keith is self employed. I wondered if finding another house meant our boys would have to switch schools. I thought about all the hard work involved in moving. The more I thought, the more discouraged I became.

I glanced back down at my bible and flipped through several pages in the book of Psalms. I some how ended up in 2 Samuel 7. It was there that I read a story about King David and how he longed to build a house for the Lord. It would be the permanent resting place for the Ark of the Covenant. When I read verse 11, it was as if a light went off in my head;

"The Lord declares to you that the Lord Himself will establish a house for you"

This verse in my bible was already highlighted, which meant I had read it before but today it had an entirely new and personal meaning to me. God was confirming in His Word that He would establish a house for us. I didn't need to wonder why God has allowed this untimely visit.
I didn't need to worry about where we would live next. I didn't need to know all the details. All I needed to do was trust that He would take care of us. Here was my confirmation, right smack in the middle of 2 Samuel, that He would establish a home for us to live in.

What about your current situation? What area in your life are you asking God to establish for you? Here, try filling in the blanks below;

"The Lord declares to __________ that the Lord Himself will establish a ______ for you.

Maybe it's a new job you've been looking for.

Maybe it's a restored marriage.

Maybe it's a better relationship with your child.

Maybe it's a financial miracle.

Maybe it's your calling.

Whatever your situation. No matter what struggles you are facing. Trust God and know that He is establishing something good and everlasting in your life. You don't need to know all the details. Walk in faith, one step at a time, confidently knowing that whatever He establishes cannot be taken away or destroyed.

Monday, July 20, 2009

A Good Idea vs. A God Idea - Part 1

Well, our house has been on the market for three months now. When we originally listed our home with a realtor, I told my husband, "Don't expect it to sell overnight." At that time, I had no idea how true those words would be.

In the past, when we would decide to sell a home, we never used a realtor. We'd just stick a sign in our front yard and within two weeks a contract would be signed. Assuming the same thing would happen with our existing home was a big mistake.

Although I absolutely love our home and would like nothing more than to stay here forever, our finances or lack there of, has required us to make this difficult move.

Last Friday, we received an unexpected knock at our door. My husband had fallen asleep on our bed and I was folding a mound of clothes that some how ended up on my laundry table. The kids were out playing with friends and I hadn't gotten around to making my bed or straightening up around the house.

As I walked to the door, I could see two women standing on my front porch, peeking in through the glass windows. As I opened the door, I noticed that one was wearing a badge with her name on it. At first, I thought they were selling something but as the introductions were made, I could feel the muscles in the back of my neck begin to tighten.

These two women were actually a realtor and potential client that wanted to see our home... at that very moment! No notice. No advanced call saying that they were coming over. No scheduled appointment. Just a knock at the door and a simple request. Well, actually, it wasn't simple at all. I politely asked them to walk around the yard and give me a few minutes to tidy up. Then I flew into the bedroom, woke up Keith out of what appeared to be a very deep sleep and started shoving everything that was misplaced into dresser drawers and closets. Keith ran upstairs, while scratching his head in confusion, only to find that the kids hadn't made their beds either and the game room was an absolute mess!

While panic and pandemonium set in, I kept telling myself, "Just stay calm, just stay calm, just stay calm." The doorbell rang again and there they were, peeking through my windows again.

As I let them in, I apologized profusely and explained that I hadn't gotten around to cleaning up yet. I had a smile on my face but deep down inside, I was completely mortified. No woman wants unexpected company when their house is a wreck... at least, not this women.

The showing only lasted about 20 minutes but it felt like a hour. As I showed them around, the potential client peeked inside all of our closets and storage space. She even had a camera and was taking pictures.

As they left, I thanked them for coming and politely waved good-bye. I then calmly closed the door, walked into my kitchen, looked up to my ceiling with my hands waving and said "What was that for?" I walked over and plopped down into my cozy prayer chair. It was time for God and I to have a talk and I planned to do most the talking

"I just don't get it," I told Him. " You know that we're trying to put our best foot forward to sell our home. We want it to look perfect whenever a client or realtor comes over. We know that each showing is critical and could potentially be the sale we've been waiting for. Why would you allow someone to come over, totally unexpected, when our house is a mess? Is this what you wanted?"

Tomorrow, I'll share with you what God shared with me, after my little temper tantrum. But for now, let me ask you, does God ever do things so totally unexpected that you raise up your hands to Him and say "What was that for?"

Do you often times feel like you have a good plan or idea, one that is all perfect and tidy. Yet, along comes God, only to throw, what seems at the time, a wrench in everything?

Could it be that your good idea is not a God idea? Could it be that what seems to be His will is not His will at all? Could it be that your plan doesn't line up to His plan for you at all?

I'd love to hear what you think...