Friday, July 18, 2014

"Blind Faith"

Sometimes I think God likes to show up at the last minute for me.  I know, I know… God is always right on time.  Well, that is easy to say, but hard to swallow when you are living it out.  I guess Him seemingly showing up late for me does seem to stretch my faith, deepen my spiritual roots, and challenge me to trust Him no matter what.  When I think about how He has always showed up and taken care of me in the past, I can’t help but trust Him in the present.  Or at least I should.  For some reason when it comes down to times of testing, I feel the stress, I activate the worry, and here we go again. 

You would think I would have this figured out by now, but I guess not.

Have you ever been there friend?  Caught in the middle of a battle between faith and fear… stress and peace, freaking out and trusting God blindly…  Well, if you haven’t I’m sure those days are coming.  How do we know how deep our roots are if they aren’t tested by the strong winds of difficulties?  How do we know if we really trust God completely if our faith is never tested?   In the long run it’s all a GOOD thing, but in the middle of the testing it is NO fun!

Recently, I just finished a book study that has really challenged my thinking in this area of my life.  I’ve seen lots of positive changes in ME as a result which is good!  The book is called, “Unglued”, by Lysa Terkeurst. 

What is this “Unglued” I am speaking about?  It is what happens to US at times when someone or something bumps into our happy and messes up our pretty plans.  Let me give you an example.  It could be finding out you are having overnight guests’ only hours before their arrival…. Your house is trashed, the fridge is empty, and you have no idea where the clean sheets are for that spare bed.  Yikes!  How would you respond?  

Lysa shares a story of how her husband went to take a shower and there were NO clean towels in the whole house!  He waited patiently for the delivery of her towel of choice while she hunted.  There were none in her room, none in the kids bathroom, and nothing clean in the dryer or washer.  Uh, oh!  She had to revert to the old towels piled up to wash the dogs.  They were clean, but raggedy.  They would have to do!  She delivered the towel to her husband and he recognized it as one of the dogs’ towels and asked if it was clean.  That was the last straw… she blew!  “Unglued”…I hope you are catching what I am meaning now. 

The book was filled with lots of great ideas on how to manage this state of “Unglued”.  Through it I learned what kind of “Unglued” I am, why I become unglued, and alternatives to reacting in that manner.  The choice is mine!  I can’t change what happens TO me, but I can choose HOW I will respond to it!  This book has been life-changing for me… only because I am applying what I learned.

All that to say that recently I faced one of those faith-testing moments and I reacted out of character for me.  I realized through the study that I am tempted to become “Unglued” mostly when I am STRESSED or SICK. Well, stress has been in abundance lately.   Let me explain.  Late spring our landlords decided to put the house we are renting from them on the market.  We had officially until our lease was up (August 1st) to find somewhere else to live.  I was not surprised especially because this is the THIRD time this has happened to us.

We have rented several houses in the past few years.  Because of those times of testing and circumstances beyond our control, we haven’t been in a place to buy a house of our own.  When our landlords at the rentals came back into their houses to check on various things, they were amazed!

One even said, “Wow, this looks better than it did when we lived here.  Don’t tell my wife.”  By the end of each lease we were offered the chance to buy the house, but had to decline.  As a result, they decided to sell and while we were in it... since it looked so good!  Needless to say, each one sold quickly!

Now here we are again.  We were actually looking for houses to buy this time.  The house we are in is too small for us long term.  We started looking when they listed the house, but couldn’t find anything that worked for us.  We were hoping the house wouldn’t sell quickly, but had no such luck there.  Those freak out feelings started to rise up within me AGAIN, but my reaction was different this time.  I stopped when I realized I was becoming stressed.  I paused, I pondered, and I prayed.  I had anxious feelings about the future, but I knew God would take care of us.

In one weeks time we switched gears from pursuing houses to buy to looking for one to rent. Overwhelmed feelings continued to threaten to suffocate my spirit, it felt like God was late AGAIN.  But, for some reason I felt God’s peace consuming me as I thought about the future.  It felt like I was walking in a new kind of faith for me… “Blind Faith”.

A scripture came to mind immediately…

“For we walk by faith, NOT by sight…” 
             2 Corinthians 5:7 (KJV)

My family has been walking BLINDLY in faith believing God to do the impossible.  Since our outlook has changed, we have noticed God doing some AMAZING things!  We only had one lead on a possible rental we felt led to pursue.  It seemed like a long-shot.  It was an awesome house (or so we heard) with 5 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, one acre fenced yard, and lots of updates.  When we drove past it we realized it was WAY out of our price range for our budget.  My heart sunk realizing I didn’t even know where to begin to look for another possibility for us.  I immediately felt a check in my spirit to wait on “this” house.

Through a God turn of events, we were offered the house to rent at an incredible price.  We haven’t even seen the house or signed a lease, but we have such an incredible peace about it all.  It seems from the outside that God has given us each our heart’s desire in this house.  Check out our wish list of answered prayers for this house already below…

Me- house large enough to have lots of people over, room of my own to have an office, more private with space between neighbors, room for overnight guests.

My husband- wooded area, large yard, space for a garden, garage, place for his own office, space between neighbors, off the road, he mentioned randomly wanting fruit trees in the yard (we will have many).

My boys – they wanted to be close to the river to fish (its right down the road), one wanted chickens (not sure why he wants them, but there are 9 chickens on the property for us to keep), one wanted a garden (there is a raised garden already there), and they wanted a basketball goal (there too!)

My dog – presently she has to be on a chain when she goes outside.  I’m not sure what her dreams were for a new house, but I am thinking maybe she wanted to be able to run freely when chasing squirrels and birds.  She is probably tired of choking  herself on the chase.  Funny...  God even answers the unspoken prayers of a dog.  He is into every detail of this.

Wow!  God has already answered a lot of our prayers in this house and we haven’t even seen the INSIDE yet!  We are flooded with peace and excited about the future.  Yay God!  

Blind Faith – trusting God with the details of my life confidently even though 
I can’t see what the outcome might be in the end.  

He is faithful friend!  Trust Him with your worries today and watch Him work behind the scenes of your life to do amazing things!

Living to leave a legacy,