This first month of the new year is a month of reflection for me of where I have come from and all the events in my life that have made me who I am today. I have had dreams about aspects of my past, those in my life and the things I struggle with. Right now I am unsettled in a way that is hard to explain...not happy with where I am, but not out of the peace of God.
In 1983 my family lived on 10 acres of beautiful wilderness with a creek. It was up in the mountains and was quite hilly land, our driveway was treacherous and we went off the side of it several times 'taking a run at it' in the rain and snow. Besides the open spring well we dug with it's water pump we had to bring our drinking water in from the creek or from a relatives house. We often took showers at our grandma's and sometimes at the state park or in the summer sometimes even at a lake when it was almost dark. Our light source were lanterns filled with gas, our heat source a handmade wood stove and for cooking we had propane. We had a fire that year in December which started the separation of us from the land we called home. Looking back on that time is difficult, filled with emotions that contradict themselves. Loving the land we call 'the property' and hating living there and yet missing that simple time. Many memories both good and bad. It has marked my life.
Many things have taken place since 1983, leaving 'the property' did not change our living entirely and if anything it got worse for a time, many close loved ones have died, including grandma, little brother and dad and I am married and have children myself. I have been separated from my parents journey and am on my own journey with my husband and our children. I used to pray and wish that I would not have to relive those days of my childhood to the point of being fearful and putting a burden on my husband to provide for us. Two years ago that all changed.
It was time to face my fear of losing all. Nothing was working out financially, no matter what we did paying tithes, living on nothing, eating as inexpensively as possible, never going anywhere or having any fun, getting one card to pay off another, trading in our cars for less. Something always came up and prevented us from getting out of debt. So we tried the opposite, taking a chance to make money and be free of a confining job and of the worries of life...we tried lots of different 'schemes', starting out with small payout and eventually ending in thousands of dollars spent for absolutely nothing but injustice...which created a looming financial crisis and the knowledge that that way is not for us who were asking God to show us what it is to follow Him in 'spirit and in truth'. But it looked good...I mean we could help so many people if we had money, right?
During this ending time of striving to make money, we had been praying that God would show us His way and teach us His way. That we would know what it was to worship Him in spirit and in truth. He was teaching us by letting us make mistakes...I hate making mistakes...but they are how we learn. If I stand still and wait it is for a time and if I go forward that is also for a time...I cannot always wait and I cannot always go forward. Everything has a time. My problem was fear was causing me to be frozen in place, so I had to go forward with a plan that ended up not being right, but was for my own good all the same. So, because of the consequences of the prosperity I was looking for there was a price and that was losing all to follow God. He was telling me and my husband that He had a better way for us, follow Him. The way is narrow and few find it and how to hear His voice above all the noise of the world.
In 2007 we tried to save ourselves by hiring a credit consolidation company in August to help us pay our debt, in September the economy started it's downward spiral and this company did not help us, again we experienced injustice.
Injustice...how angry it makes me especially if it against me or someone I love. It makes me so very mad and yet, God is more angry than I, this is Him showing me how He feels about the injustice of the world, the killings of His people, the babies whose lives are ended...injustice is evil and it will only get worse before He comes back...how will we handle it? I am thankful for His direction and for showing us these things before they happen on a large scale. The love of money is the root of all evil...so how can I desire more money? Be content with what you have, do not covet. He is our provision, He gives and He takes away.
Early in 2008 we decided it was really best to go ahead with bankruptcy, we already knew this back when we made the choice to try to save ourselves from it...'bankruptcy is only for losers' was the words going through my head...so this was a new low for me...I had always felt like a loser and now it was true, in the worlds eyes I was a loser...
It happened rather quickly, we filed and were told we could save our motorcycle and house...we quickly said no, that is not what God wants and by June of that year we were homeless. It was heartbreaking...it still hurts. It is a wound I am glad to bear but dread all at the same time. Basically I went through the motions in a state of grief, different than losing a loved one but very much grief all the same. We thought we were to buy a travel trailer and sure enough one was provided to us miraculously by a 'Craigslist' add posted by a distant relative of mine, our Land Cruiser was not able to pull it so a friend helped us get it home and then helped us get it to their home the day we left our home for the last time. I will always remember standing in my empty home by myself and crying only to be disturbed by my sweet daughter and the hug I received from my friend when I got to her house. It makes me cry still, but , after all we were not promised a life of ease, so why should I expect it to be so?
We stayed with our friends in our travel trailer until October while we prepared it for travel and saved up enough to buy a bigger vehicle to pull it. Living with others is hard when you like to be alone to deal with things going on in your heart, there is nowhere to hide really and feelings are hurt more easily and well, it is hard work. I hated the day we left there, my heart was again torn and I felt so alone...and for the next three months I felt that way. It is hard to believe it was only three months now, it seemed like forever at the time. It's not that I hated it, it was a good time of reflection and time with God. We lived close to a state park and would go for walks and bike rides there. I saw a 'shooting star' and it snowed a couple feet of snow. My family was closely brought together. But our life in the travel trailer ended on January 1st 2009 at least for the time being. My mom's roommate moved out in December and we moved in to help her prepare the place to sell for the next 3 months. In March we were planning to move to a rental close by, but found out while at our friends, that the guy had rented it to someone else...injustice again. Guess we might as well get used to it, it is bound to keep happening. Besides, God must have something else in mind. I even remember saying it would be nice to have a view of the mountains...I love the Olympics. It was just a wish, I sure didn't expect it.
There was nothing...we needed a 4 bedroom home and there was nothing at all in our area. I was beginning to wonder if we had really heard right. What we thought we were suppose to do...I didn't feel stressed though...my mom was on her computer in her room looking for rentals, my husband was in our room looking for rentals and I was in the front room doing something on my computer...but it wasn't looking up rentals. I just thought well go look up Belfair...so I did, and there it was a 4 bedroom house for rent...they could hardly believe it was there and were trying to find it on their pages and it wasn't there. It was called on and my husband went and looked at it the next day and was there for 4 hours...our bankruptcy did not matter to the renter, but he wanted to make sure I would not be disturbed by the 'stuff' on the property. And there is a view of the mountains!
So, here I am sitting here typing this in the bedroom of this house God provided for us to live in for now...it isn't a perfect house, it has it's problems, for one I am again mostly alone..but it is for my good. The mountains are beautiful this time of year with all the snow...when they are visible. There is a price to pay when you decide to follow God in all you do...this year we will be giving up our anniversary 'trip' because the goats will be due...that is my small struggle right now...I am selfish with my time with my husband and was looking forward to his days off at that time...but having milk for my family when it is possible to be in need of it is more important. It is silly really, we will still be together, just not alone.
As I conclude my reflection on my life, I want to make sure that I give God thanks and praise for always being with me even when I am distracted off the path He has for me. He always brings me back and shows me the way to walk. Back in 1984 He gave me a real vision of what Jesus did for me which I had forgotten, I often forget the important things when I am distracted by others testimonies, it is nice to be reminded that I too had a life changing experience even if I have grown up knowing who He is. It was good to share with my children as well. I am thankful for God's provision in my life as it gives me hope for hard times that I have already experienced and lived through that He is always with me. And I am thankful for the love of my husband in which God again has shown me His love for me is far greater than I can imagine. I am thankful for the children He has given us to train up in His ways and the small freedom we do have in home schooling them. I pray for courage always to stand up for Him in the day of trial.
Thank you for visiting my blog and I hope my words have given you hope in your journey!