In case you missed them: Part 1 and Part 2. A couple of weeks after telling Josh & Jess that we would happily be their squatters, I was having ice cream with a friend. Sharon is middle-age, single, and has made the decision to follow God's call into vocational missions. She believes God is sending her to Papua New Guinea. Say that three times fast. Sharon has found an organization called The Finishers Project, and they focus on helping folks who want to finish their lives in mission for the Lord. I just love that.
Anyway, Sharon is potentially months from her move to Papua New Guinea, and she was recently confronted with an issue regarding her current living situation. Her lease will end next month and it makes no sense for her to sign another lease. She could change from a year lease to a month-to-month rental contract but her rent would increase significantly. Considering that Sharon is working to save save save so that she can begin her missions journey, the month-to-month option is unwise. So when she found out about our situation with Josh & Jess, she asked me a question that I was not expecting, "Would you and Matt consider letting me live in your condo until I move?"
Sharon completely caught me off guard. See, when we decided to move into Josh & Jess' house, we also decided to put our condo on the market once and for all. It was too perfect. We could stage the condo, throw the lockbox on the door, and walk away without ever pulling out that gallon of Sherwin Williams Desert Sand ever ever again. No more frantic toilet scrubbing and kids-dog-van disappearing tricks. Oh I could cry!
But God had given us a house. A rent-free bona fide house. And I owed it to Him and to my friend Sharon to at least pray about letting her live here. Plus, I knew that as soon as I asked Matt, he'd shoot the idea down, and I'd play the good ol' submit to my husband card and we'd be on our merry way to attached garage living.
I called Matt at work, told him about my interaction with Sharon, and continued in my head, I know, I know, I'll tell her it's just not going to work out. Surely someone else has a house they can loan her.
And then I realized what my husband was saying on the other end of the phone, "Honey, yeah, why wouldn't we let her live in our house?"
And just like that, I realized what a ridiculously ungrateful selfish brat I am to the core. It's a miracle that God has not capsized me and fed me to a giant fish.
Matt was all for it. Matt didn't even have to think about it. The fact that God made Matt my husband, to lead me and our family, is clearly no mistake.
God was giving us a house. A house we do not deserve. And God is asking us to give away our condo. The condo that we did not deserve.
And thus begins the lesson that He has been hammering into my skull over and over and over again ad nauseum. For real, I have this vision of the good Lord looking down on me and grabbing a trash can to catch his vom because once again, His little girl just ain't getting it.
And so I am humbled. Asking God to show me how to open my palms wide, allowing all the stuff to trickle between my fingers, never once tightening a muscle to hang on. God is showing us what it looks like to let His blessings flow. As He uses another family to provide for us, He uses us to provide for another. It's community. It's the Gospel. It's Jesus.
And so we are moving. In fact, we are moving 5 years to the day after meeting at the altar. And I am so thankful. I am so thankful for God's provision. His timing. His faithfulness. His promises.
I could go on and on. A friend who recently heard about this story said, "It's dripping with mercy." And it is. His mercy abounds. Because each and every day I take the gifts from my Lord and I squander them. I throw away leftovers and spend too much on too much and I question His ways that are not my ways. And yet He continues to provide for me in ways that I could never ever imagine.
I am drenched in His mercy.
And as I sit here overcome by His love, I can do nothing but shake my head and ask, "Why me? Why us?" It makes no sense.
And I guess that's just the point.