Sunday, July 24, 2011

Digging up from under the pile God's way

5:50 p.m. Today's project was to welcome three sets of company to our home, allowing the Lord to pull us up from under a pile of trials that have characterized the month of July.

The month began with our dogs getting out of a gate my husband Steve left open, costing $530 in total fees to bring them home, only half of which has been paid; the Jeep's transmission blew on my daughter's wedding day, so that along with the animal shelter fees, the new part ($800) and a very small payment to our mechanic, much less than he deserved, our house payment was in jeopardy. One car, one driver, one choice...

In another part of the state, our youngest son was also struggling, with the summer halting the physical education program he ran for mentally retarded adults; and the economy in Fresno caused his private clients to quit. His bodybuilding sponsor proved very sporadic in their payments, so Steven experienced real physical lack, and even his great faith was shaken: no job offers despite hundreds of applications, several interviews, putting his rent in jeopardy. More than once I offered to bring him home. (His Jeep is currently needing a water pump replacement--must be the 6 year mark for our identical models)! But he feels that with the ministry he's involved with, that God wants him there. If that is true, then I fully expect God to move in Steven's behalf. May the last two interviews result in the perfect job for him! As his mom, it's so hard to get his text messages, during the struggle and only being able to send a few bucks to help, and rarely doing that. My main source of comfort for him has been scripture. If God would allow David, the man after God's own heart, to be a 10 year fugitive, stating in I Samuel 20:3b, "there is but a step between me and death," then He can obviously allow other men and women who are walking with Him daily and serving Him, to suffer great trials.

That's how I see it, because we all have lessons to learn in this life, and trials do some powerful teaching.

God graciously allowed me to earn my expenses for my trip to Dallas, but I barely could afford to eat, and ate very little besides the meals Mary Kay Inc. paid for, and almost couldn't get my luggage checked in because I hadn't realized that even the first bag costs $25! $50 down the drain--and over my cash travel budget. But God was faithful to provide the money. Additionally, I lost my sunglasses and broke my camera. I'm just grateful to be home, honestly!

Upon arriving home, after signing all of the caregiver's time sheets in my clean kitchen--good job, guys--I checked the thermostat, and it read 83*. What? I kicked the air conditioning down several degrees and went about to eat a quarter chicken leftover from a casserole I'd made for the men, unpack, spend time with Steve, and just rest. But it was hot. Now the thermostat read 87* and it had to be faced--the A/C was broken! Steve, not surprisingly, hadn't said anything. So we turned on 3 fans and actually were reasonably comfortable. "We're not fixing this, no money, so we'll just figure on getting used to it!" I told Steve.

This morning after church, I posted a request for A/C repair suggestions on Facebook, and by lunch, Jason, an old neighbor, had called me and was coming over in the afternoon. Thank you, Lord, that he discovered a small part that was not working, and got the air on for us, and will be checking with the manufacturer on a warranty. The part may cost us nothing!!

Our next scheduled guests were daughter Heidi and husband Pavel, fresh from their first married couples' retreat, to pick up her mail and her cell phone bill, which she gave us a check for. But while I was outside ministering to our air conditioning repair man, she and Pavel were reviewing the disc of their wedding pictures--another blessing, because I now was able to attach a photo to their wedding announcement, and email it to the Press Enterprise. God even cares about the relatively minor details of our lives!

Best of all, my friends Joanna and Sarah came over as promised with a huge supply of Mary Kay business tools and supplies, because she has given up her successful business in favor of finishing her bachelor's degree and preparing for a move to Alabama with her husband and family for ministry at Calvary Chapel Foley.

I can't even list all that she brought me, but one "hostess gift" stood out, to testify of God's love for me: a pair of sunglasses!

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