We are going to lose our house. Our mortgage payment is a fraction of what rent would be, even in places I wouldn't be willing to live. Our property taxes are exactly the same each month as our mortgage payment. They went up over $200 a month this year, they may go up again next year.
A could very conceivably get a job that would still make the payment, but that doesn't cover what we are behind on. There is government funding to help with that, but they won't give it to us because our W-2s look awful. The only reason we've survived this long, was some help here and there from family, money from Dan whose rent payments are unofficial, and a job I got in December and had until April. None of this shows up on last years W-2 which is how they are judging our worthiness.
All those "help stop foreclosure" websites and organizations are for people who got mortgages for obscene interest rates from predatory lenders. We have a great rate. Our township is a predatory taxer and there is no help. We will never get another mortgage after what the last 2 years have done to our credit. (In an attempt to avoid hyperbole I suppose I should say we won't get a mortgage for 3-7 years.)
All of that is about money. I don't like money, I don't understand money, and I am bad with money. This is what it come down to. I love my little house. There is work that needs to be done on it, a lot of work, but it is my house. With my purple walls, my green bathroom, and my tiny kitchen. I want to finish the basement as a 4th bedroom and 2nd bathroom. I have plans for cabinets over the island with a wrack for stemware. My bedroom is the safest place in the world and no one can hurt me there. I DO NOT WANT TO LEAVE.
I'm not asking for a mansion. I'm asking for a way to keep my little row home, grumpy neighbor and all. I'm not asking for a hand-out. I am asking for a chance to work. I'm not asking for a 6-figure salary, but a 5-figure one would be nice.
I want a chance to succeed.
My dad told me this story about when he was in seminary. He had no shoes, his only pair got a hole in the sole. He couldn't afford a new pair of shoes appropriate for school, and for pulpit-fill. So he prayed for shoes.I'm pretty sure he was expecting a pair that fit at a 2nd hand store. Instead 3 pairs of new shows, just his size, came into his life from 3 different places. So I've prayed. I've had faith. Every application I've sent in, every interview either of us has had, I get EXCITED. I'm like a kid on Christmas. I figure out how the schedule would work, where the money would go first and how to stretch the pennies for the first 6 months so that we can make up for what we've missed.
Every application, every interview, goes wrong. And now it's passed, unless I get a miraculous job by mid-October we are done. There is no more deferment, there is no more stalling. I know miracles can happen, and I know miracles do happen, but how long do you hold your breathe for a miracle?
I don't know where I will be living in 2 months. I am scared out of my mind. Yet again the lectionary smacked my knuckles with a ruler. Matthew 6:24-34 "No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon. Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment? Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they? Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature? And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith? Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof."
I believe, I really truly believe, I see the evidence of God's faithfulness in other people's lives every day. I see people who have a path laid out for them and as long as they walk that path everything comes together. But after years and years of looking and trying and failing, I thought, THIS TIME, I was on the right path. I thought that this time this path was right. Brian in seminary, me at DCPC, both committing to ministry with zeal and joy. So where do we go from here? Because nobody is calling me back. Because nobody is flying in at this final hour to whisk us out of the fire, at least not yet. So just like everything else in my life I am pessimistically idealistic. No matter how many times life proves to me that I will not win. No matter how sure I am I will never win. I'm always holding my breathe as the buzzer sounds. Maybe, just maybe, this time, I will have been wrong and good things will happen.
P.S. To save you all the trouble: Romans 8:28 "And we know that all things work together for good to those that are called according to his purpose." And to save me the trouble: Trust me, I was an English major, that verse is only comforting if you put the commas in the right places! Are we called according to his purpose, or is the good according to his purpose? And the chief end of man is to glorify God and enjoy him forever, so if our misery brings glory, then by definition it is good because it has accomplished our chief end. Just because God promises all things to work together for good, it does not mean that this situation will end well, nor does it mean that I won't be accidentally deported to Siberia with a sun-dress and a bible. Maybe I am meant to freeze and be buried in a snow-drift so that some future post-Christian Siberian can find it and rediscover the gospel. You see all things work together for good, but that doesn't mean I'm going to like it, or that I am not going to fail.