“Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.” James 1:17.
You know how you sit and dream, and sort of have a “wish list” of things you’d like in life? They might be small desires or huge desires, but you never really pray for them because you either A) Think them too insignificant or, B) Too huge to even expect them to happen. So you just let them go, and get on with your life.
In the past, my husband and I would talk about what we would like in our “next home” when and if we ever moved. I desired a place in the country for several reasons: walk outside in my pyjamas and not have the neighbors see my every move, have a few chickens, perhaps a small dog, some flowers, trees for shade. My husband wanted space for a vegetable garden, we both wanted a wood stove as we remembered the bone-penetrating warmth they provide. I wanted a larger living room where you could seat more than 3 people comfortably–unlike the living room we had at that time. I also wanted a kitchen that was prime for remodeling, as my husband– “The Handyman” knows his “stuff”. And my long-time dream of having a kitchen pantry was a must. I first fell in love with the idea of a pantry when as a child, I discovered one in the house my Grandfather had grown up in. That pantry was a small room, shelves on the right and left, and a window in the middle wall. Yes, a pantry had been my life-long wish, appealing to my sense of organization, and nesting–a pantry can be decorated, you know, all those labels facing forward, different sections for each category of product… I thought a big front porch would be fun to decorate, and we both wanted a one level house, smaller yard, basement for storage and over-flow, and a garage. These weren’t all the things we dreamed of, but this was our list concerning a home.
Fast forward a few months and I’m on the hunt for a new home. I quickly crossed some less than desirable homes off my list as requiring too much repair work for our stage in life, too small, jumbled layouts, neighbors on top of each other, etc. The day came that I looked at the house we now live in; the moment I walked in, it had a good feeling… quiet, comfortable, a living room measuring 13.2 X 24.9, and there in the corner… a wood stove! Oh my goodness! I see ahead a kitchen in need of a remodel.. yes! And then, in the kitchen, a pantry! A large basement was in the package with this one level home, and there appeared to be space for a vegetable garden in the smaller, more manageable back yard (we ended up borrowing space for a garden from the next door neighbor in exchange for produce). No garage, not out in the country (town is much more convenient for needs), we’ve planted two trees, I’m not killing myself with flower bed maintenance, the yard is fenced, and there is even a doggie door (but I think I might pass on the dog–the next door neighbor has a sweet little one that I pet and talk to.) God threw in a large, old-fashioned front porch (we’ve hung a porch swing), brand new energy-efficient windows that open inside for easy cleaning (wow–I never thought I’d have that!), new energy-efficient front and back doors, updated electrical, plumbing, new roof, new water heater, and new heat pump.
And you’ve seen those fancy-schmancy high-dollar pick up trucks haven’t you? Those trucks that often cost $30,000 and up easy… well, for years I’ve shot up some prayers asking God to drop one out of the sky for my husband. Every time I’d see one rumbling down the street, all sleek and shiny, powerful… a man’s truck… I’d ask God to please give my husband one of those… I told God I’d allow Him to choose the color, I wouldn’t be fussy on that point. A month prior to our relocation, it just so happened that my husband saw a pick up truck selling locally–for $500– a Ford 1977 F-150 Custom automatic… not $30,000 and up, and not real shiny, but very serviceable and affordable, especially since my husband’s nephew was interested in buying our old Jeep for $500. So, it was a done deal–sell the Jeep for $500, buy the pick up. Even Steven… and what a blessing this old truck has been! God doesn’t always give us what we want, but He gives us what we need.
We have marveled and thanked God for fulfilling some dreams we really didn’t expect to be fulfilled. Prior to and all through-out our move from one home to another, we saw God working right and left on our behalf. So many things fell into place, the road was smooth, and people appeared exactly when we needed their help. It increased my faith– we hear so much about how trials increase your faith, and they do, but what a delight to see God working right before our very eyes.
And I’ve realized that even if some of our dreams in life are not fulfilled, God is still working, still knows what we need, and, “life ain’t over yet…” The older I get, the more time that passes, the more I can see the unfolding of God’s plan for my life. I rest assured that no matter what happens, He knows me well and knows what is best for me and will provide. Be encouraged, as I have been– “for I know the plans I have for you…”
The top photo was taken in the rural countryside. I was so excited to see Queen Anne’s Lace growing… I hadn’t seen it for over 45 years.