We all had to leave the house at 10:00 this morning; vacating for prospective buyers coming for a tour.
In my pajamas, I push the broom around the kitchen, clearing countertops of clutter, when H leans over the bar and asks me, “What do you want to do for an hour?” Normally, Starbucks would be my answer but our wallets are empty.
“I think we should take a walk on the beach,” I tell him.
We drive to the consignment shop first, to pick up our monthly check from the van loads of possessions we’ve relinquished. As I stand next to hooks holding used bangles and necklaces, I see my crystal clock, a wedding gift, among the pitchers and vases. As the sales clerk scours her database for our account numbers to print out two checks, I think how did we get here. This used to be extra spending money and now it pays for bread and butter.
The here I’m currently living isn’t foreign to us. We lived off the $.59/$.79/$.99 menu at Taco Bell when H was in seminary. The $.99 items were a splurge in those days but I’m noticing how poverty is affecting me differently now.
My hands aren’t shaking.
A decade ago, poverty brought fear along with it. Every time I paid for something – food, clothes, bills – a physical reaction came with the fear of being overtaken. It’s as if my body remembers what my mind forgets. As a child, my hands trembled every time my mother signed the credit card receipt for things she couldn’t afford that put us in a compromising position.
But a track record of God’s faithfulness gives me peace.
We no longer fear being overtaken when we know we’re overcomers in Christ. God doesn’t put the faithful in compromising positions, he provides a way out.
As we drive onto the island toward the beach, past sweaty runners and egrets standing next to fisherman pulling nets full of fresh catch, it’s as if we are transported to another place. Suddenly, the cares of our situation fall off in exchange with the wonders of creation. I am carefree, light and expectant.
Though you may be in a season of preparation, you aren’t stuck because God continually creates. He wants you and I to know that, yes?
Pushing toes into sand, H and I walk a long stretch of empty beach. A conversation of prayers energizes our steps as we cast cares onto frothy waves rolling over the top of the ocean. H points behind us, toward the wide expanse of water and exclaims, “Our new home is that way, on the other side of the Atlantic.”
I don’t know who is walking through our house and opening closets but I’m praying for a miracle of an offer. The pan I need to make dinner is packed in a box. Or maybe it’s on a shelf at the consignment store.
Whatever it is you are going through, God wants you to know that He will make a way out. Your poverty in circumstance is preparation for trust, not a life a sentence. Prayer is your lifeline.
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