Life was bee-bopping along comfortably, with the normal scheduling and concerns but nothing serious on the horizon. I need to start paying attention when life feels like that because that is when stuff seems to happen. My husband sits down next to me on the couch and tells me that the tenants in our rental house will be leaving in July. And just like that my stomach drops and I feel anxiety start to creep in. My mind starts racing and exploring all the options. I start calculating how much money is in our savings account and how long it will last if the house sits empty. I immediately start assuming worst-case scenarios with having to declare foreclosure because no one wants to rent the house and it won’t sell for the price we need in this market.
I decide to go for a run. It is hot and humid and my lungs are struggling for air but I make myself keep going. The pounding of my feet and the music in my ears starts to calm me down. The physical ache of my body distracts me. To my right the sky is starting to golden as the sun sinks toward the hills. Evening light always calms me. I pray to the rhythm of my feet – “God you are good. You have always provided. Help me to trust you. Take away my anxiety.” As I run and pray I start to see possibilities. I start to see how we can financially make things work even if the house sits empty for months and our savings account drains. I start to see that all the things I had feared were a result of my pride, my desire for control and self-sufficiency.
The run leaves me purple-faced and drained, but calm. God has spoken to me through the encouraging text messages of friends, through the beauty of the world around me, and through the beating of my own heart. I will need to be reminded again of His faithfulness but for the moment I am calm and at peace.
Despite my outward calm my night’s rest is disturbed by strange dreams. I wake often and finally drag myself out of bed in the early hours of the morning. My head is pounding and I feel sluggish as I pour my coffee. As I check Facebook the memories feature reminds me that 4 years ago this week I was spending my time painting the same house that is my cause for anxiety now. Four years ago we were unexpectedly thrown into the role of landlords when the person who was supposed to buy our house decided not to. So we quickly painted and cleaned and repaired and prayed desperately for someone to come and rent or buy our little house. And God provided beyond our expectations with a lovely couple who have cared for the property well.
I feel like I should place a stone of remembrance. I am so quick to forget. I need a visible altar. Today that altar was Facebook.
I sip my coffee and pray. I have an opportunity to trust God and to watch Him provide for us, again. I do not need to fear.