We have been a transitional phase of our lives for about 19 months. Wanting to leave the area but tethered to a home here like thousands of Floridians. The housing market is great if you’re looking to buy a home. Not as great if you are looking to sell a home! We listed our home with a friend who is a realtor – nice gesture but no action! When the listing expired we decided to try to sell it ourselves. While we were a little discouraged, we were convinced there was/is a family out there that will be perfect for our home – God just hadn’t shown it to them yet! Long story short, it appears we will have a contract to sell our house in a few days! God’s timing is certainly not my timing but I have got to be convinced it is so much better! Of course, now the other part of the mystery equation is what I will do as gainful employment and where! We have devoted a large part of our lives during this phase to serving at City Church Tallahassee and want to continue to be where God wants us to be. City Church has been able to provide me some part-time income and will soon begin providing us health insurance – both we are very grateful for! I still need to find something to supplement that and I’m convinced that God will either show me where in Tallahassee or provide for me where He wants us to be!
While my housing comments seem to be about good timing, I received a text yesterday from a friend that wasn’t good at all. My friend shared with me he was now counted in the ranks of the unemployed. Terminated with no cause given. The day before a holiday. That just sucks. No nice way to describe it. But I’ve got to believe that God has something better planned for my friend. And I hope he will believe that soon. Our timing is never God’s timing, even though we like to think we have some control over things.
Today is the 4th of July – Independence Day in the United States of America. I’m grateful for the people who decided to do what they did to make this nation. I don’t worship them or this nation. There are some great things about being an American. There are some great things about other countries as well. If we’re not careful we can make our patriotism an idol in our lives. I’m more excited about the freedom I have in Christ!
New International Version (NIV)
Freedom in Christ
5 It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.
God has a tremendous sense of humor! He also allows lots of scenes to play out in our lives to give us the opportunities to react and live how He has instructed us to. Here’s a great case in point:
If you’ve read this blog before chances are you know I have been unemployed since January 2011. God has provided and for that I am thankful! While I have been searching for employment, luck has not been with me! A new friend this year has been praying with and for me in this search. He has been very encouraging along the journey. So much that as a job became available in his organization, he encouraged me to apply. And while he couldn’t guarantee anything, he was on the interview committee! Interview day came and I had a good session with the three men on the panel. Granted I didn’t have some specific experience they preferred but I did have a boat load of the general experience they required. As the weekend came I was a little bummed that I had not heard the results yet but went on about my duties. Sunday I led an orientation session after each of our morning services. Before I could start the first one, my friend on the interview panel came up and told me someone else was offered the position. Timing is usually everything and this really wasn’t the best!
My reaction could have been extreme at this point. It would not have been unheard of to become discouraged, angry, disappointed, bitter, (you fill in the adjective). But God provided me with calmness and a sense of direction as I was able to continue with my volunteer job and my orientations went very well.
The next day I texted a friend about my discouragement in this job search. Later I apologized for whining to him and acknowledged that God has been very faithful to us and for that I am grateful. His response to me is one that I hope I remember for a long time – simple but so true: “God is good all the time. All the time God is good. But life is real and sometimes it stinks. And at times we just don’t know what to do.” That’s not just pastor talk, that’s friend talk. And I love him for saying those words to me.
I’m convinced this is another specific example of God providing me the opportunity to add to large inventory of experiences that I will be able to share with someone who needs to hear about it. While I don’t like the outcome of the interview, I am grateful that God allows me to see a bigger picture. While sometimes I think this is all about me, I really know that it’s not. It’s really about Him!