Sunday, February 23, 2014

Are You Where God Wants You?*

Matthew 10:14  Any city or home that doesn't welcome you -- shake off the dust of that place from your feet as you leave.

I've told you before about buying and rehabbing an old house during the early 1980s.  Right toward the end of the needed repairs, I had an hankering to move to the Tampa, Florida, area where I had a brother.  I knew at the outset that God didn't want me to go.  I remember telling him during one of my prayers that I had received the message, but that the house still needed to be sold.  I wanted or felt that I needed to move on to another situation. 

I put the house on the market, but for reasons totally unknown to me, I forgot immediately that God had impressed upon me His will that I not go south.  So, when the house sold and closed in about three months time, I took it as a sign that God approved of my going to live near my relatives. 

I applied for positions, flew down for interviews and bought a house on contingency -- contingent on my receiving a permanent full-time job.  Well, the good Lord is said to work in mysterious ways.  His reaction to my move was not so mysterious.  I got my sons, my furniture, my car and myself moved down there only to find that I could not find permanent full time employment.  I worked a series of temporary jobs, including one that lasted six months.  I even found an additional permanent part time job.  I just never got the one that would insure my ability to buy, instead of rent, that house.

The lovely realtor who had sold me the house and I consulted concerning the situation.  She, being an avowed and practicing Christian, asked me a question I'll never forget.  What Bible scripture keeps running through your mind during this time?  I didn't even have to give it thought.  "Shake the dust of that city from your feet" came tumbling from my mouth. 

I didn't intentionally ignore God's wishes.  I simply forgot.  Nevertheless, He closed door after door and even a few windows to get my attention.  I have never even felt so far removed from His presence as I did during that time.  I was not supposed to move down there.  I had promised I would not.  I had forgotten my promise.  He insisted.

Sometimes we need to evaluate why it is that we find ourselves being square pegs trying to fit in a round hole.  It may be that we ignored God's will a long time ago, leading us to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.

In my case, I rented an eighteen foot U-Haul with a trailer for my car.  I packed my sons and my belongings up into it and headed for home, shifting a standard transmission through those scary mountains.  I'd hardly started when an angry driver honked over a mistake I made.  One of my sons inquired if we were going to crash and burn.  I responded with an emphatic and confident no.  After all, after nine months in Florida, I was finally doing what the Almighty wanted me to do.

I found a temporary job almost at once.  By the next month I had that elusive permanent position.  In three months, I had recovered financially enough so that I could rent a house, instead of sleeping on my daughter's floor.  God was smiling on me once more.

How about you?  Are you where God wants you to be, doing what God called you to do?  If things are not going well for you, you might want to shake the dust of that city from your feet.

*Thank you for your patience during the hiatus.