As you may have noticed, I have not been posting nearly as often as I have in the past. Our family is going through some big changes in which all the credit goes to God!
Let me back up a few years… to right before my husband took a job as a pastor. Previously he worked in the carpentry industry as a Union Floor-layer. He made some good money with great benefits. However, God clearly called him into ministry. So, he enrolled in Bible college prepared to follow God wherever he led.
As he was wrapping up school, he asked me to pray about a pastoral position. I felt that God had put it on my heart to tell Ben, “Stop searching. The opportunity will present itself and nothing you do will influence that.” So, we carried on with life as we knew it. Ben was working an out-of-town job in Chicago when a number from Belleville, IL called. Though he missed the call, the voice mail said, “My name is ___from First Christian Church. We are looking for an associate minister and I hear you are looking for a job.” As the interview process continued it was obvious this was the opportunity that presented itself, and God’s hand was all over this.
Though the church offered a good salary package, it was still a pay cut. My husband battled with his flesh over this choice. One day he was at Arby’s on the phone with his friend, Greg, when a lady walked up to him and said, “God says you are to stop worrying about money so much and be obedient.”
That was almost three years ago. For the past three years, we have been commuting from St. Louis to Belleville for church. However, I really had a strong desire to be part of the community. The more I worked in kids’ ministry, the more I wanted to be that hub where the kids could just come and hang out.
One of the guys from church mentioned to my husband that his neighbor’s house was for sale. We looked at it online. I would have been fine with the house, but after looking at the price tag, I decided to search some other houses in that price range. I found an absolutely beautiful home listed at the exact same price two miles from our church. I showed it to my husband, and he was like, “You think we can afford that?”
In the meantime, my husband was contacted about another job. He was looking into the job, but it was going to require a move. When looking at the houses in that area he got this overwhelming sickening feeling and knew this was not the direction God wanted for our family. Instead, he started looking at that house I showed him right next to our current church.
Well, we contacted a real estate agent (literally three days after it posted) and the house already had a contract on it. BUT it just so happens that members of our church live in that subdivision and they knew of a house that was available because another neighbor had bought it to fix up and ensure the neighborhood remains nice.
The next thing I know, we are literally buying my dream house (though there are still some remodeling projects needed) for an amazing price right next to our church in an amazing subdivision. AND somehow all the financing worked out perfectly!
God literally made a way when there seemed to be no way. It is an answered prayer. Our previous home was intended to be a starter home… but almost twelve years later we had six kids and were not seeing a way out of it. I prayed that God would provide a way out of that house and made a wish list of a home with a dinning space and another living space. Also, a second bathroom would be nice… And this house has it all and then some.
All I can do is brag on God. He made the way.
When my husband was telling this story to someone, I overheard him share that part about the lady telling him to not worry about money. And I was overwhelmed with AWE!
Because that very morning I was reading Luke 18: 18-30, the rich ruler. We know this story. A man asks Jesus what he must do to inherit eternal life. Though the man keeps all the laws and commandments, Jesus told him to sell all his possession. The man walked away sad because he was rich.
As the people heard this they asked, “Who then can be saved?” and Jesus responded, “What is impossible with man is possible with God.”
If that man could have seen into the future and realized God was going to provide for all his needs, maybe he would have sold it all. Maybe he would have been willing to walk away and trust.
Over the last seven years, my family has been called by God to step out of our comfort zones and trust God. First, I was called to quit my job while pregnant with #4 and my husband was a brand-new apprentice. Then Ben was called to school. I was called to write. Ben was called into a pastoral position. And now God has called us to move into the neighborhood of our church.
God led every step of the way. But we had to follow. We had to choose to trust Him. And it has been the most amazing thing to witness as God provides time and time again! All the glory goes to Him!
Listen, it may seem scary taking that first step in obedience, but trust me when I say don’t worry. God will provide. It may not be in ways you expect. It may not come in your desired time line. But He will bless you. He will lead you. And when He does, you will know that He is Lord.
With God all things are possible.