I should wait until this whole process is over to post…
This has been the thought pervading my mind in regards to this very post. Many times, when I consider writing or posting something, I like to write from a more knowledgeable perspective. I don’t like writing about an experience or a life event as it’s happening. It makes me feel like I don’t have control. It makes me feel incomplete. It makes me feel like I’m not qualified to talk about said experience since I haven’t finished living it yet.
I think that’s the point.
My Housing Struggle
The past few weeks have been a whirlwind of stress and activity. We have been looking for a new home for our family amidst the owners of our current (my in-laws) house selling the one we’re in now. Two separate families operating on two different timelines isn’t exactly a walk in the park. While we’re packing our stuff, we’re also trying to help get the house ready for sale: cleaning, fixing, adding, removing. It has not been an easy few weeks.
Amidst all this were some health complications and crazy children on top of it all, and it has honestly brought me to my knees on more than one occasion. God, what are you doing! I cry. You see, I do not enjoy feeling helpless. I struggle with confidence mainly because I don’t want other people to think I don’t know how to do something, or think that I’m incapable of doing something on my own. I like to be self-sustaining. Ironically, God does not like me to be self-sustaining.
God has brought me through the last few years at Missio Dei, and has retooled my heart with a desire for community and transparency. As elders, though we make many mistakes, we do try to lead from this perspective as well. In my discipleship circles, I’ve learned to share almost anything, from the mundane to the extravagant with them. It truly is the, perhaps overused, phrase doing life together. All that to say, I’m honestly not quite sure why I’m having trouble sharing with you today all that I’m about to tell you. I mean, I do know why, and it’s for all the reasons I listed at the beginning. But when I sit down and just think about it, I know I have no reason to neglect sharing these things with you. You all know how broken I am. I certainly don’t need to pretend like I have it all together.
God’s Homeless People
I’m currently reading Exodus for Lent from with the website He Reads Truth. The past week or so, God’s been giving Moses detailed instructions for the construction of the Temple, along with all that goes with it. The courtyard. The relics and silverware for the interior. The Ark of the Covenant. The High Priestly garments. Reading chapter after chapter of instructions on how to build these things, the length, width and height of these things, the color of these things, the material of these things all needed to be exactly as God commanded…or else.
Moses chose skilled craftsmen of every trade to get the work done, and done well, and they built God’s house in the wilderness.
Ever since the exodus from Egypt, God made his people to be mobile. They had to pack and transport the tent during the entirety of their travels, what would be over 40 years in the wilderness prior to their settling down in Israel. Throughout that time, God provided everything the Israelites needed in spite of their own grumbling, complaining, and profaning God and His love for His people. He sent manna for them to eat, water for them to drink, and guided them with pillars of cloud and fire. While they were living in a time of uncertainty, forced to live day after day of not knowing where they were going next, God provided for them in their homelessness.
Can you imagine if God had commanded Moses to build a permanent tabernacle as he charged King Solomon years later? That thing was not built for daily tear-down and set-up! Even in the construction of God’s own house (the tabernacle), He made it mobile and ready to move.
Let’s not miss the significance of this: God made his own house and dwelling place mobile so He could always dwell in the midst of His people and provide their needs on a daily basis.
So here I am. In the midst of weeks of daily turmoil and uncertainty, reading through Exodus, not actually learning and gleaning the true significance and application to my own life until I finish the whole book. God is with His people through daily uncertainty and turmoil. Truly, He will never leave me or forsake me (Deut 31:6; Heb 13:5) and so I don’t need to worry (Phil 4:6) or be afraid (Ps 118:6; Heb 13:6). God has been faithful to His people since day one, and His character certainly hasn’t changed since then.
So even in uncertainty, I can still trust in my God, that, though I can’t see, and though I think I have a better plan, He’s directing my life, and this was for a certain reason and, surely, His plan is better than mine.