The past six months have been some of the hardest six months in our marriage, in a lot of ways. But mostly, it has also been six of the BEST months of our marriage. (I know, it was the best of times, it was the worst of times…but stay with me.)
We have been through some really rough patches in our marriage before, and they have each been difficult for their own reason, and they each came with their own lessons. Last Fall, God moved His mighty hand and finally set the events in motion to get us into this house. This house that sat “in the plans” and just out of reach for so very long, suddenly and in God’s timing, became a reality. Every single step through the entire process screamed of God’s glory as we faced one setback after another followed by one deliverance after another. In the end, there was no way that we could claim that WE had done anything to get us in our house, but by the grace of GOD, He had done it.
FINALLY… on December 16th, we spent our first night in our new home. And then. There’s always an “and then.”
Rewind a moment to six months before we moved into this house. My husband’s job (self employed computer work) suddenly and almost all at once, just stopped bringing in enough money. From June to July, we went from *just* being able to pay our bills to juggling, putting off and scraping by. Being self employed means ups and downs, feasts and famines, and usually when there’s a lull, it’s followed by an upswing that helps us catch up. But the upswing didn’t come. And it didn’t come. And then in the Fall, God moved and things clicked and all the finances and pieces and people and everything lined up to get us in the house. I remember standing in the doorway of this house (double wide mobile home) the day the movers arrived to move it to our property, telling God that I trusted Him to provide a way to pay for this house that He had provided. I took a deep breath and I left that worry with God. And then…
And then… my husband made so very little money for January. Not for lack of TRYING, I assure you! What seemed an impossibly tight financial situation became even tighter. While things did improve some in February, the income was actually worse than it was last summer. But all the while God provided. Beginning last fall, God began to bless my blog and through that, some income was provided to help us get into the house. Throughout this Spring, God has continued to bless my blog and online business and He used that to help us keep our electricity on and have food on our table. God also blessed us and provided in other ways, like an opportunity to help out a local mom with some temporary childcare (and in turn blessing us with some babysitting money for groceries.)
As everything got tighter and tighter, God provided more and more.
And then. (Sometimes the “and then” is a good thing.) And then God provided a way out of the drought through the provision of a sufficient and regular contract client for my husband’s business. God provides AGAIN. God takes care of us AGAIN. And as we catch up and take care of things, we start to feel like we can breathe again. You don’t realize you’ve been holding your breath for the past six months until you let it out and inhale deeply of God’s blessing.
And what happened in January, you might ask? What brought on this sudden and undeniable financial attack?
In January, my husband began taking seminary classes. The Enemy has been hard at work, squeezing, pressing, pulling. But my God is greater and stronger and we are not crushed, we are not abandoned, we are not destroyed. Satan may try to bring us down, but if God is for us, WHO can be against us??
I have watched God working in the heart of my husband over the past two years and it brings tears to my eyes. I have watched God growing my husband over the past six months particularly and I will never cease to be amazed by the changes I see. My husband, who a few years back would not even attend church with me, is now the spiritual leader in our home, a totally reformed man through Christ. Of course, God has been working on me, too. We don’t know what the future holds, what God has in store for us, what God will want James to do with his seminary training. I will trust God with all of that, and in the mean time, I will drink deeply of the peace and blessings God is raining down on us, through the Spirit which is busy at work in our lives right now.
I just want to praise God! He has brought us safely through the drought. He has brought us into a time of watering and growing. Praise God, from whom all blessings flow.
Two nights ago, I had a dream. We were hunkered down for a storm, here in our house, and the storm raged and raged. It rained and rained and the water was coming up and up. Suddenly, there was a wall of water, clear water, rushing down the hill toward our house. It hit our house, built up off the ground, and flowed under, over and all around our house, swallowing and enveloping us for a long tense moment as we waited to see if the house would hold or give in on us completely. We were looking out the windows at the cool clear water as it swirled around above and around us. Water seeped in, but the house held and after a moment, it began to recede as the water continued on down the hill. The house stood.
There was more to the dream, and I won’t even get into the “burning bush” part, but the storm and the flood is the part I want to focus on. We have been through the storm, and we held tight together and weathered through it. And now God has flooded us with his blessings, with the work that the Spirit is doing. Completely enveloped by God’s blessings, flooded by them, is exactly how I feel. And our house (family), built on the rock, STANDS, firm against the storm, strong in the downpour of God on us, and God is good.
God is so SO good.
Background image source: Spatter Water by George Hodan