Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Roof Over My Head

Have you ever found yourself in a situation where God didn’t seem to “come through” the way you expected Him to? That’s where I’ve been. Coming to California this summer has proven to be a huge leap of faith. Not that I ever want to put the Creator of the universe in a box, but somehow I tend to expect Him to do certain things just because that’s the way I’ve seen Him work in the past.

In the early years on the field, we moved about once every eight months. For seven years. Do the math. It was enough to drive me over the edge. Then we felt called from Guatemala to move to Oaxaca, Mexico. God miraculously provided a house and the funds to purchase it. We’ve lived there for the past 16 years.

Back in 2002 it became apparent that we needed to take a real furlough and seek help for our youngest daughter who still was not speaking at age four. We sent an email prayer update explaining how we needed a place to live, hopefully someplace that would allow not only seven children, but also three dogs. (Don’t even ask.) Within 24 hours, God had amazingly provided the perfect house. The owner gave us a hugely subsidized rent, and it was affordable. Even the location was ideal.

This summer, again, we had to be stateside for the sake of our family. This time we felt compelled to come to California to be with our two college kids. This time, however, we found no affordable housing whatsoever. All we found was a three-bedroom apartment recently vacated by nine college men. It was fully furnished, largely from dumpster “donations” –and, well, not to sound ungrateful, it was three times more than we had ever paid for any other housing situation, and did I mention it needed a serious cleaning?

Anyway, I kept praying and wondering if there wasn’t surely another place out there that we had simply missed. I sent an email to one of the two friends I have made since we arrived here. Right away she wrote back about a possibility. With that one connection, we met a young couple preparing for the mission field who “just happened” to buy a house even though they can’t move in until August 18, coincidentally two days after our return flight to Mexico.

They had prayed about what to do with this house over the summer, joking, “Maybe God will send a missionary family to Simi Valley, who ‘just happen’ to need housing for two months.” They had dedicated their house to God and asked him to use it. Then they got an email from our mutual friend, and found out about us.

This week we moved to a 2-story house where we will pay exactly what we can afford. Bonus blessings include a barbecue grill, a crock-pot, popcorn maker, dishwasher, and anything we could possibly want or need, including a swimming pool and tennis court run by the Home Owners’ Association. The funny thing is I am not surprised. I am, however, thankful for the month in the apartment just so I can fully appreciate this glorious provision.

How about you? How have you seen God’s faithfulness this week? Or His mercy and His love? We’d all love to hear about it.

IRL*In my Father's house...all the time.


  1. over and over again. God is faithful and generous!

  2. Hi SHARON!!!! :) First of all - had to get that out!! Funny - the paths are 'still' crossing.

    Jamie - how do I know that He is faithful RIGHT NOW? Well - because it is promised, part of His character and HE is the ONLY thing that doesn't change in life.

    I'm working really hard to not squeeze my view of my God through the sieve of just MY experiences. I'm so thankful He is bigger than that. :)

    That and we're all still speaking to one another. :) Hey - gotta look for all the silver linings. hehe

  3. Do I know Sharon, too? This world is so small.

    Generous. That's a good word, too. In fact I may use that in my next week's post.

    Faith, my inspiration for the furlough-not-a-vacation post, I am glad everyone is still speaking. That is something. Sadly so much perspective isn't gained until you are looking at your troubles in the rearview mirror. You, my friend, are still staring at them in front of you.

    It's not fun, but God is good. Keep repeating this.

  4. We're going back to Tokyo in under 3 weeks. My biggest concern leading up to this was that we'd spend the weeks before my husband and kids starting school (he's a teacher) living out of suitcases and shuffling from here to there all the while looking for longer-term accommodation.

    BUT instead we'll be moving into a house less than 36 hrs after we arrive and our biggest concern now is getting a fridge! Oh, and did I mention that the house is only 300m from the school, includes air conditioning in most rooms and a large American-style stove (oven and 4 burners), a garage and two toilets. And is within budget.

    God has provided beyond our dreams again!!

  5. Last furlough, I finally started calling each new miracle-house our "manna house". He seemed to provide each one JUST at the right time and just for as long as we needed it. And, it reminded me not to hold onto any "days worth" of provision... it would just rot and get maggots!! Instead, "eat" and enjoy the manna He provided that day!! He is faithful! Thanks for sharing with us.


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