When we toured the house, it was vacant. There were a few pieces of furniture and random odds and ends but for the most part, it was totally empty. One of the odds and ends was this refrigerator magnet. I noticed it immediately and it said everything I felt…
It was our first year on staff with the Navigators. Earlier that year, we had unexpectedly lost our housing. The Lord provided a place for us to live and we moved in with a kind woman who allowed us to live in her basement. While not our ideal situation, it was what we needed and it turned out to be a blessing. We enjoyed the 8 months we spent there and we liked getting to know Diann and will always cherish our time in her home. However, we knew our situation was temporary.
We prayed, asking the Lord’s provision for a place to call home. We asked that he would show us where to live and how to afford it. At this point we were making very little, not enough to pay rent and pay our student loans. There were times we toiled over where to move and when. I would worry and grow anxious. Yet, we knew He would provide for us, even if it wasn’t in the way we expected…
One day, Bill (our boss and mentor at the time), said that he thought he had found a place for us to live and that he wanted to discuss the details with us. I was hesitant, unsure of the arrangement he had discovered. Careful not to get my hopes up, we waited to hear about the place Bill found. When we did come together to discuss details, I was in awe…
A man knew of the Navigators because his friend had served with them on campus through the same internship we were involved in. This man also just happened to have a vacant townhouse in Colorado Springs. He asked his friend if he knew anyone in Colorado Springs doing the internship who needed a place to live. This friend just so happened to know Bill and passed the message along to him. Basically, this man was hoping that his home could be a blessing to someone doing full time ministry. He was offering his house, free of charge, to be used by us.
Free of Charge.
So he arranged for us to tour the house. He was located out of state so he got the keys to Bill and we were able to look around. As we drove to the house, questions flooded my mind…
Could this really be happening? Would it be a nice house? What if it was in a bad neighborhood? When could we move in? How long would we be able to stay? What will it look like? How big/small is it? COULD THIS REALLY BE HAPPENING!?!?
And now we are back to where the story began….a vacant house. My heart swelled as we peeked around. It was a newish, 3 bedroom townhouse with a 2 car garage. It was more than I dreamed of. I had expected to pay rent for a tiny, dingy one bedroom apartment and yet here we stood. This house was truly “blessed”.
We moved in within the week. The man told us to make it home. He told us to paint and live there freely. Who does that?
So here we’ve been living for almost 5 years now. We have started our family in this home. We have started our ministry in this home. And that magnet still resides on our refrigerator. Every time I see it, it is a reminder of God’s goodness, his ability and desire to fulfill our needs, and of this man’s sacrifice and generous heart.
I’m sure this man would be bashful if he knew I was writing this about him and that is why I have chosen to not reveal his name. He wants all the glory to go to our Lord. He gives freely without asking anything in return what-so-ever. He thanks us for what we do and that he gets to be a part of it! What a heart for The Lord this man has!
So that is the story of our house….but it isn’t over yet…
Over the past (almost) 5 years, we have lived here, only paying our utilities. This man is no longer able to provide for us in this way so he has asked us to pay rent come April 1st. We are happy to do it. He has provided thousands of dollars worth of housing for us. If we could begin paying rent now, we would, just to remove any potential hardship from befalling this man. But our salary doesn’t allow us too. Since beginning on staff, our salary has never included rent. Adding rent in would not allow us to come near breaking even with our other expenses.
So we are asking the Lord a few things:
1. That he would provide for us. Our funding and (subsequently) our salary needs to increase dramatically for us to be able to afford rent. We are asking the Lord would continue to provide our housing as he sees fit. We know that this will most likely come by us increasing our salary which means we need to fund-raise more support. We are asking the Lord to provide the donations we need.
2. We are praying blessings upon the man who owns this house. We are praying the Lord would bless the socks off of this man for his generosity, humility, and meekness. We are asking that he would find himself blessed in all areas of his life, including financially because of the great financial blessing he has been to us!
Would you pray with us?
Obviously our request is time sensitive. We need to have the ability to increase our salary come March 1st. Would you pray our funding comes in? Would you pray about whether the Lord would have you give?