Friday, May 30, 2014

Steps of Faith

Today we close on our house and Ben quits his job.

We will be officially unemployed and homeless.

Oh good.

That's the nutshell version. I almost posted that on faceook but then I thought better of it. Better make it a blog post so that we can explain.

This is us saying yes to God and His call on our lives.

We are moving to Chicago to help start a church, but really, it's been so much more than a move and so much more than us wanting to help friends with a church plant. It's been God asking us if we will truly give up our lives and the things we love here on earth so that He can have more of us. He's been asking us, are you really going to follow Me anywhere?

Can I just say right here that Jesus wasn't just some good prophet? He wasn't a good man, His teachings were provocative at times. He was, I should say, is God. He doesn't want just part of our lives, He wants ALL of our lives. Ben and I are feeling the weight of that as we make this move. Jesus said things like, if you don't hate your father mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters - yes, even your own life - such a person cannot be My disciple.

We are learning to hate even our own lives.

Ben said in talking to people at work he can tell that they think he is foolish. He's refusing to climb the corporate ladder there and is venturing out for a new job in Chicago.

Yes, we will be helping with the church, but we won't get paid by them. This has also been a dream of Ben's, to be involved in church planting but still be a part of the work force.

We are heading up with our stuff on Monday. We will be living with Gabriel and Debbie Mayes for a few months until Ben finds a job and we can find some place to stay a little more permanently. Our kids will be sharing rooms with their kids (praying this goes smoothly, hoping for the best and expecting the worst) Ben and I will have the fourth bedroom and share the bathroom with all the little ones (for about two seconds I was disappointed but then realized we share our master bathroom with all our kids anyways, so whatev).

Ways that God has provided financially:
He gave us a ridiculously good car for a ridiculously low amount of money last fall. (It was doubtful our 1995 Camry would make it up there in all the snow)
He gave Ben an end of the year bonus (this was pretty typical) and then a second bonus (totally a surprise)
He sold our house in like three days! At our asking price! (Whaaaaaat?! Thank you Lord!)
Ben had saved up a few weeks of vacation for when Simeon was born but wasn't able to take it because he was so busy at work, so now he will get two and a half weeks of vacation.

God has done all of this. Time after time I ask Ben, "Why do we worry?" Why do we fret about these things? Does He say that He will provide? Now I'm praying that we will be wise stewards of the resources He has given us. It's like the Lord knew we would have enough stress with moving and three little kids, He just didn't give us more than we could handle. He truly is a good God.

He is our Provider.

Side note from that: I just want to say here that Ben and I have intentionally avoided debt in our lives and that really has allowed us to have freedom to move. It's allowed us the freedom to step out in faith and quit our job without (major) worries. Romans 13:8 says "Let no debt remain, except the continuing debt to love one another, whoever loves others has fulfilled the law." That's been the goal of our life in Christ.

Lord, this is rough. It's been a difficult last few weeks, but because of You, it has been good. Thank You for Your provision. Thank You for support of friends and family, this could not have been possible without the body of Christ around us. Thank You for constantly helping me with my attitude. You are my healer, in so many ways. I pray for open hearts for Ben and I as we move, we are plant ourselves in a foreign city for Your glory, that we would follow You even more. Let us be more devoted to prayer, and to Your Word. Let us be more sensitive to Your Spirit. You are worth it.

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