In retrospect, it was not that big of a deal. You probably all know the story by now. It’s interesting how now I can sum it up joyfully in just two words; “We moved!” Our family is loving Duvall, and as Mark has said so well, “We hate how it happened, but we’re so grateful to be here.” There were a lot of details to the summer and things were incredibly overwhelming. From spiritual warfare to broken appliances, it was easy to feel broken ourselves.
But it was also a summer of beauty. Of fishing in the evening dusk at a mountain lake in the Sierra Nevadas. Sweet Joshy exclaiming, “We’re on such a late-night adventure right, Mama?!” We saw glacial lakes and climbed boulders and ran from ocean waves. We listened to good stories on long car rides that reminded us that sometimes the struggle makes the story sweeter. We spent good time with family, learned to ride bikes (and swim!). We ate a lot of ice cream. Yet with all that beauty, the moment I knew God was with us, was oddly enough when we found out that the oven in our new rental home would need to be replaced.
To provide context, we had had a horrible walk-through just the day before. The house suddenly looked dirtier, smelled funny, and for a while seemed to have no hot water. We discovered that none of the cooking appliances worked properly. It was a humbling experience to hear the property manager calling the owner on your behalf to ask them to send a repair man over so that the “tenants” can cook food when they move in the next day. The owner agreed. And so there we were. With a loaded to the brim moving truck, two pods of our belongings in the driveway, and no Plan B. We had little choice but to move our family into what felt like an icky, inadequate situation.
At the end of the big move-in day (a huge thank you again to all who helped us make it happen!) we put the boys to bed and waited downstairs with the repairmen who were still determining if the oven was repairable or not. At about 9:30 that night, they informed us that they were going to need to call the owner to tell him that the oven could not be fixed.
By this point, I was too exhausted to care. It didn’t feel good calling the new owner so late at night. It certainly didn’t feel good to know that we couldn’t cook breakfast the next morning. But we were spent. We had absolutely nothing left in the tank. We had been through a whirlwind of emotions, travel plans, caring for our boys in the time of uncertainty, and this felt like just one more thing to add to the list.
One of the repairmen made the call and gave a brief update on the situation. Mark then heard the owner respond, “Is the tenant there? Can I just talk directly to him?” The owner very kindly apologized to us. “I am so sorry. This is not how I wanted this to go for you. I am going to get the unit replaced as soon as possible.” Our relief was immense. The owner was kind; he was responsive; he desired to just speak directly to us to make sure we heard the message.
Have you ever found yourself in a crisis like this? A moment when you didn’t know where you were going? Maybe didn’t even know who you were? Even in this moment, are you wishing someone in charge would just speak directly to you and tell you that they want good for you and that they’re going to work on it? Well, my friends, perhaps you are the tenant. And perhaps the owner is a kind king. And perhaps He does want to just speak directly to you and tell you that He’s making things good. Hang in there.
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28 NIV