After three weeks of work that my TAM-riddled body really shouldn’t have attempted (which it has been painfully reminding me), my wife and I have moved into our nice new large house, and (more painfully) we have each finished moving out of our old places, cleaning them within an inch of our lives, and then either yard-saling or donating or trashing the rest. My lovely wife sat in the heat with her best friend the last few days and sold off the best of what we didn’t keep, and then spent hours supervising a local church (not ours, because of proximity) hauling off the remainder. (They apparently misunderstood the mass quantities of matter we were donating!)
In the process, we found several examples of God’s providence.
When we first planned this whole thing, we thought, “Let’s get married in June – we can find a house in June, and she can start moving in before the wedding; I can then move us in after the wedding, and we can both be out of our respective places by the end of the month.” That allows us to follow His Word for our marriage, lets her get things set up the way she wants it, and all that. I made arrangement with my ex-wife to have our children for two straight weeks surrounding our intended wedding date so we could move in together…
And then, we changed plans. We eloped in March.
So, see, we started looking at the way the insurance would work, and the changes involved in my retirement, and how my creeping introversion was starting to panic about an increasingly large wedding… so impulsively we called our pastor and got married with about twenty of us there one Friday afternoon during our spring break. No big deal.
Except that it meant we were going to start looking for a house together in late March. And after one false lead, we didn’t find one. At all. I mean, NOTHING fell within the guidelines we set – minimum of four bedrooms, better to be five; within my children’s current school district boundaries. As someone dead certain the Rapture was coming any minute, I interpreted this as confirmation: I’d been praying that IF there was no reason to move, Lord, make it so we DON’T move before Your Son comes to retrieve us. And it sure looked like that was the plan for a long time.
What we didn’t realize was that God was still working with our original plan.
That meant that on June 1st, God shared His Plan with us. My wife spotted a listing for this home in the evening, we called the broker the next day, saw the place first thing on Monday morning, and signed the papers that afternoon. Done. Just had to use His Timeline, that’s all!
We started moving in towards the end of the week, moving much of my house’s inventory in first because the new home was within half a mile of my old one (my wife lived ten miles away). But the biggest problem I had was the owners of the new house didn’t allow pets at all – and I was having NO luck finding a new home for our three cats. We were just about done in the old place and needed to move the cats somewhere before we could finish cleaning. So I set a deadline for a certain Friday to find them a home or take them to the local animal shelter, as much as I hated the thought.
God hated the thought too, it turns out.
As Thursday progressed, and we finished our work there for the day, my car key went missing. I could not find it anywhere – and eventually, my daughters and I had to walk to the new house and leave the car there. This meant that the “plan” was sabotaged and I couldn’t take the cats in Friday until I’d gotten the other things on the list checked off.
Friday morning, my bride dropped me off to look for the key… and it was very obviously sitting underneath the car, directly below the driver’s door. If it was there yesterday, I couldn’t have missed it! But I had the key back – and the cats were reprieved for the day.
That evening, when my step-daughter returned from her week working at this dude ranch in northern Nevada, she met me with “Do we still have the cats?” (Um… yes. Why?) “The owner asked us if any of us could bring cats down to help with our mouse problem. Your cats chase mice, right?” (Absolutely!) In fact, the only drawback my three felines had was that they were already fixed – the owner was hoping for breeders.
But the only reason my cats WERE still able to go live on a mouse-riddled ranch, chase mice for a living, and save themselves from the shelter was that GOD hid my car key from me…
Why were we able to get the house done? Because we still had the four kids with us for two full weeks, so they had the chance to not only help us get the old house clean, but they were able to get their rooms set up the way they wanted and start to get used to the new house. It must have just been coincidence they were there, right? (And coincidence is spelled G-O-D…)
Oh, and then there’s the good fortune of my wife having taken the two days off before the Fourth of July. She meant to do it so we could have some “honeymoon” time after the kids left for their mother’s, but it turned out to be utterly necessary in order to finish emptying her packed garage. Just dumb luck, right?
No such thing for a child of God.
“But”, you ask, “WHAT ABOUT THE RAPTURE?”
I don’t know. Of course I don’t know – I’m not God.
The signs all pointed to something happening in May or June. It didn’t, but that doesn’t mean the signs are wrong. In fact, they’re all still in place – all the Biblical markers have been fulfilled, and we’re just awaiting the final sacrilege at the Western Wall. The Lord tends to match up key events on significant dates – which is why it looked like May 14th (the 70th anniversary of Israel’s re-birth) was a likely date. There isn’t anything particularly obvious to me this summer, but that doesn’t mean He couldn’t return today, tomorrow, or next week.
So, just stay prepared. Stay in your Scripture. Obey the Lord’s teachings. Remain a good Christian, helping all around you towards salvation as you are able.
And love the Lord with all your heart.