Monday, December 14, 2015
On Friday, December 11th, we were headed to Walukuba which is only 5-10 minutes away from Jinja town. Knowing that Ruthie had already looked at all the houses in the area and coupled with the fact that there just wasn't much new to see, we were not expecting to see much. The broker had one new listing this week and he thought perhaps this one might work, even though it didn't have a garage. As we drove through different neighborhoods, suddenly the houses seemed a bit nicer. I had just stuck my hand out the window and pointed at this one house, saying, "Hey, that one is cool!" when the broker's car in front of us stopped. He pointed at the very same house! Could it be? Surely I had misunderstood him to mean the very same house I had just pointed out to Bob, but I hadn't. The thing that caught my eye from the street was a large, round front porch covering the central part of the house. Beautiful, I thought! As we entered the house and moved from room to room, I could almost instantly picture our furniture in each place. The kitchen was large enough for our big range/oven. Not only was there a bath tub, but the tub has a seat contoured into it. There is a linen closet in the hallway. The boys' quarters is roomy enough for our stuff and Bob's tools. The dining room is large enough for our 12 person dining room table. Four bedrooms. Four bathrooms. A small window between the kitchen and dining room to pass food through. I am still amazed at all the features that this house has for us!!! Not only did God answer our prayer for a BIG house and LITTLE money, He gave us some neat extras to enjoy!!! I can hardly wait to move in and begin enjoying the new residence that He has provided for us. Today we signed a temporary contract. Tomorrow we sign the final agreement. The deal is made. The work to repair needed things to prepare the house for us will begin in just a couple of days or so. The owner invites us to come and check on the house from time to time while it is in progress. God is so gracious to us! This house was not available earlier. It is as if God was telling us to wait, because this house was not quite ready for us to come see it. What a wonderful surprise to not only see a great house that we fell in love with, but that the landlord was agreeable with our budget and needs. All glory and praise and honor to Him who does abundantly beyond all we could ever ask or seek!!!
Tuesday, December 8, 2015
Just under five weeks to go before we have to be in our own new place, somewhere in the Jinja area. That “seems” like a lot of time … but somehow today, it doesn’t feel like enough. We have no house to move into. Ruthie Howard, who lives with us when she is not on the island working with SHIM, looked diligently for us at house after house in anticipation of our arrival. The search was on. “Our” idea was that we would secure the house before we arrived, even doing the contract by email and sending the money by MoneyGram or Western Union to secure the deal. That would make life so much easier for us when we arrived, right?!! That way we would have ample time to pack up and move our things. As is often the case, God obviously has other plans. We have asked Him specifically for a BIG house and LITTLE money (essentially, that means a 4 bedroom house with a garage and a separate boys’ quarters for $500 or less – difficult to find in Jinja town.) Any houses that seemed to fit our needs were either too expensive or faded quickly away to another’s fair find. We believe that He has “the” house for us and we only need to find it. He has done just that for us before. Perhaps I need reminding!!! It was 1997. Bob was pastoring a circuit of three small churches in Wytheville, Virginia. He had graduated with his M.Div. degree the year before. We were expecting our first child when the phone call came. My mom informed me that my sister-in-law’s cancer was back, not only back but much worse. Bob wasn’t home at the time, but I instantly knew in my heart, “It was time to go home.” Home meant moving back to Oregon. By the time Bob came home and I shared with him about the phone call, he instantly responded, “It’s time to go home, isn’t it?” It was clear. We knew what we needed to do. Because we knew that churches looking for a pastor might be few and far between, we asked God to find us a church within 90 minutes to 2 hours away from my brother and his family. We wanted to be available for whatever they might need but thought, realistically, we probably wouldn’t be able to locate any closer than that. (Oh, my, what a faith walk we had yet to walk …) To make a long story short, in our search for a new home (unbeknownst to us), my brother was also searching for a new home, one that would be in the small town of Dufur where their children could get into a good school and be able to walk there daily from home. God not only took us to a new home two blocks away from my brother, we could even see his house from our front living room window. On top of that, it was cheaper for us to rent a truck for 7 days than it was for 5 days. My brother used our moving truck for the last two days to move his things! God is sooo good!!! It is good to remember. Ephesians 3:20-21 was forever engrained in my brain. Now if only I can “feel” it the same way that my brain, oh, so forever knows!!! Because I KNOW that He has “the” place for us and will reveal it in His time and in His way!!! “Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.”