Sunday, October 10, 2010
Sunday Afternoon Tea
My ponderings this week were quite dream-like as the mental picture came to me in that space between deep sleep and becoming awake... where Wendy said she could be found if Peter needed her in the movie Hook.
The images were so real, I felt I could reach out and touch them... images of a tree with deep roots (as if one could look into the ground and actually see the roots as easily as the branches) being fiercely blown about by hurricane force winds.
I sensed rather than heard a Voice telling me this is what I am if I spend time with Him and let my roots grow deeply into His Word (which I have been neglecting lately). No matter how hard the winds of trials and tribulations of life come against one of His who clings to Him... they may be ruffled a bit but never blown away and lost forever.
Every once in awhile, I have had someone remark on my deep faith and how they desire the same and I tell them... I would not wish upon you what it took to gain that faith. For only when the roots must grow deep... do they. It is human nature that way, we tend to run after God when we most need Him... in the storms of life.
I tend to share a lot but not all for there are seasons which I prefer not to talk much about, such as the months we all spent living in one room of a cheap motel when we returned from Iowa... all of us with flea bites on our ankles because they lived in the carpeting. Not what one expects when helping their husband through graduate school.
Then... years later... once again we had to give up a house (and this one my "dream home") at a loss due to a year with no income and move away when the only job available was in Detroit. Would I still Trust and Believe if I had to give up the Dream?
A couple years later, after my husband lost his job due to 9/11, we found ourselves moving with absolutely no money in our pocket and having our "biker neighbor" run to us as we were backing the U-Haul out of the driveway to tell us he felt he was to give us "this"... that being a hundred dollar bill.
It was just what we needed for gas for the U-Haul and car (and McDonald's) to get us to our destination. Did all go well immediately? Oh, no... for my husband and I ended up living in another room in that same cheap hotel with Christopher staying at a friend's house... again... how could it be that after rebuilding a life we would find ourselves living in the cheap hotel room... again.
From there we moved to a town house living next to a drunk, a prostitute, and teenagers whom we suspected were making meth. But something happened in that place as I knew I was living exactly where He desired me to be... His hands and His eyes and His feet... to those who are truly Lost.
One's faith roots either grow deeper or one gives up completely. You can see why... when I have a week that fatigue has been worse than usual or the car has broken down (again) or my slightest of desires appear not to have come true... it doesn't matter so much.
For I live in a miracle, you know. Our own house here at the edge of the forest. I have known what it is like to only have oatmeal to eat for three meals and to come within a half an hour of not having a place to live (although Stephanie reminds me she would never let that happen). I once ended up in critical care because I ran out of insulin before my daughter could call my pharmacy from far away with her credit card number. It just happened that quickly... missing one shot.
It was that incident that caused my husband to realize he must apply for Disability and which... as a result of him being accepted immediately due to his bipolar symptoms from his teenage years... opened the way for us to purchase this house with a special government low income grant. I am thankful we live in a part of the country where we can still purchase a house we can afford.
Like St. Paul, I really do know what it is like to have a lot... and nothing. When working in a corporation... I have worn nice suits (albeit purchased half price), advised corporate vice presidents, ate at the most luxurious of restaurants, and traveled. Later as a homeschool mom, I have enjoyed living in my dream home... not overly expensive but nice... and had "enough". Only to have circumstances come against us which took it all away... again.
The faith and the peace did not come immediately. There were many... ummm... talks with the Creator of the Universe as I reminded Him we did all we were told to do for success... hard work, education, etc. I mean, really... we were tithers for goodness sake! Why did this happen not once but a few times... this "life falling apart" stuff.
I can't explain it but somehow I just knew... as if He downloaded Truth into my soul. There is privilege in suffering that we will never understand this side of Eternity. But somehow I know it was True. As my fingers have been removed from stuff and things and then becoming ill and needing Him just to get through the day... Faith and Peace took the place of Prosperity. Has it worked out so far?
Well, when Christopher graduated from homeschooling... his three minute speech was about our "biker neighbor" supplying our need when church people had not always been kind. After years of being homeschooled from the sofa at times, he is on the Dean's List at the University. My daughter is compassionate and always willing to help one in need. Neither are bitter and both understand what it is like to be in need.
Right now life is a little stormy but nothing like those hurricane force winds that have come against us at times. But it was in the the Category 5 winds that the roots in Him had to go deep enough to sustain life, to not fall over the edge. What happens when your roots grow deep? You are strong enough for others to hold onto when the storms appear in their life.
Sometimes it is just good to know... He is enough. If we only end up with Jesus and nothing then that is fine, one could not ask for more. It is not the American way but perhaps if it had been... things would be a lot better.