I could make excuses for taking so long to write again, but they would be fairly lame and ultimately still just excuses.
If I was going to make one though, it would be this: I’ve been busy the last couple of weeks getting ready to move, and then getting settled in my new place! Yes, God has come through once again, and I am now living in my very own space – complete with my own kitchen and bathroom – for less money per week than some of the rooms I looked at in a shared house.
I will try not to be super wordy about this because I want to share other stuff, but I feel the need to brag on God a bit and tell the story of how I came to call this home.
Back in April, I felt like God told me one of my new friends would be key in helping me to find a place to live here in Sligo. So, when she mentioned a place she used to live that might be open, I thought it must be the place. One quick phone call dashed those hopes, because the place had recently been taken.
Soon after that disappointment, I gave up on the search and decided to go on my adventures around the British Isles before I thought about housing options anymore. Upon arriving back in Sligo, I started looking for (and stressing about) housing options again almost immediately.
I scheduled appointments to see two places, and neither worked out. One was rented before I even got to the chance to see it thanks to being rescheduled multiple times. The other was even more frustrating because I walked more than an hour and a half in the rain only to find out the landlord didn’t have keys and we could only peer in the back windows at the kitchen I would share with 4-5 others.
On the way home from that fiasco, I gave up again. I told God I was done trying to find a place, and He was just going to have to drop something in my lap. I could almost hear Him cheering and saying, “Finally!” 🙂
The next day, I felt like I should call my friend and ask her to call her former landlady just to see if, by some miracle, the place was coming available soon. It was nearly a week before I heard back from her, but it was worth the wait! She said that I was hearing from God, and she couldn’t believe it, but the place would be available in a couple of weeks – about ten days before I would need a place to move into! More than three months after I first felt that she would be a part of the process and even that this place was for me, it finally happened – despite the fact that I had long given those words up as “bad pizza”.
I am in a great neighborhood, close to town, with room to have guests over and everything I need. I could not ask for a more perfect set up. Included in the furnishings is a TV with the necessary channel to keep up with “Doctor Who” when it comes back on in a couple of weeks. That may not seem like a big deal to you, but it is a gift from Jesus to me!
So, in light of the gift of this house, it’s time to move on to the other things I want to share. This is the harder bit because it requires vulnerability and courage that I don’t want to have right now. It puts into words for a broad audience things that could make me look terribly foolish.
Oh well, if people discover the truth that I am a flawed person, capable of being foolish, so be it.
I’ve mentioned before that God has been challenging me to trust Him for some big things, and I’ve made no secret of my desire for one of those things to be a man with whom I can share my life and build a family. That’s not really a scary thing to share because it’s a common desire for women my age. I want to have kids, and the clock is beginning to tick louder than it was before.
The reason this is scary to write, is that I believe God has been speaking to me about His intention to fulfill that desire within a short amount of time. I like it better when He tells me it will happen “one day”, or even “soon” – though I wrote before of my dislike for that word. Why do I suddenly like those vague timeframes in regards to God’s promises? Because it is easy to believe for “one day”.
When God begins to speak a specific timeline, I get nervous. Once that time has come and gone, if things have not fulfilled my expectations (based on His words, of course), where does that leave me? Sitting on a mountain of doubt, thinking that I can’t hear God correctly, or worse that maybe He lied!
The other danger in believing for a certain timeframe is that as it draws nearer, I begin trying my own methods of “helping” God keep His words. In this particular instance, I catch myself wondering if I will miss out if I go to the wrong coffee shop, or whatever other place I think it’s likely I’ll meet some nice man. I could easily start obsessing over how to ensure that I don’t miss any tiny piece of guidance that will put me in the right place at the right time to meet this guy.
According to my experience and the thoughts of the locals I’ve talked to, it isn’t really “likely” that I’ll meet a nice, eligible, Christian man anywhere around here. So I begin to wonder about online dating, but that doesn’t feel right either. How will I know the right website? Even if I knew a good one, I can’t spend money on that when I now have a rent payment to make. Besides, people don’t support me so I can send their donations to a dating website…
There they are – the paragraphs that make me feel foolish. I start freaking out about how to help God with His job.
Yes, I’ll feel disappointed and perhaps confused if the allotted time passes and nothing has happened. I’ve been there before. I get upset, question, cry a bit, and move on. The world has not ended during that progression yet, and I typically come through the process trusting Him more deeply than before.
The foolishness comes in when I attempt to “help”.
I don’t know what is going to happen with the things I feel God is speaking. I don’t know if I’ll meet this guy soon, marry, have kids or anything else. I don’t have a clue where this elusive creature who could fill that role might be hidden, if there is such a man in this place.
There are some things I do know though…
I know that God spoke, and the universe was formed out of nothing. I know that incredible things happen when God opens His mouth. I know that His perspective and mine are vastly different, and His is always more reliable. I know that sometimes we just have to “give up” on our own efforts to see His promises fulfilled, and let Him do it without our interference. Finally, I know that no matter what happens or when, He is trustworthy.
So, I will continue to trust. I will enjoy my time in this home, and let it remind me of His faithfulness to His words. I will follow His lead and continue to pursue the ministry opportunities He is providing. I will live a fulfilled life in the community where He has planted me. And I will look forward to the fulfillment of all of His promises in His way and His time.