Most of you know by now that my husband lost his job/business over 2 years ago now. He has been looking and looking for a job ever since with no good results. We were able to survive for a while on our savings, then our retirement savings, and then our home equity line of credit and our credit cards (very bad idea!). When all of that was exhausted, we didn't know what to do! We had already cut just about every possible extra expense we could think of. But we still had our necessary bills and of course now we had credit card payments. We were able to muddle through a few more months, but then we realized we were finally in a place we never thought we'd be. We couldn't pay our mortgage payment. There was just no way! Our hearts just sank and we started down a road we'd never been down before. The road of going into default on a loan. And just a few months later, we also had to stop making payments on our credit cards. Bob and I had always had a stellar credit rating, now it's, well, not so stellar. Bob finally realized that he had to start looking for ANY job. So he applied at Home Depot, Lowe's, various restaurants, other stores, and more, all to no avail. He was able to work for the U.S. Census for several weeks, which was helpful, and then a friend of ours from church started asking Bob to come work for him doing various handyman type jobs. Thankfully, this has continued, although somewhat sporadically, but it has at least helped pay the bare minimum bills. Our church also helped us out for a few months with our utility bills. Bob has also started another part-time job with an events company. In spite of all this, the day came when we had to go down yet another road we never thought we'd be on. We realized we needed to apply for government assistance. We immediately got some help for food expense, and have now also been approved for health coverage. Thank you, God! We are still waiting to see if we will qualify for some cash assistance. In May of this year, we decided to put our house up for sale as a short sale, to try to keep it from being foreclosed on and going to auction. We got an offer on it very quickly, and breathed a little sigh of relief thinking we'd avoid the foreclosure. Well, a couple of weeks ago, we got a notice from our lender that they had turned down the offer on our house. The same person almost immediately re-submitted a higher offer, but apparently our lender didn't accept this one, either, because we found out this past Monday night that our house went up for auction this past Friday (Sept. 17). We don't know yet if it actually sold, but this has rocked our world a bit!
I cried out to God for help; I cried out to God to hear me. When I was in distress, I sought the Lord; at night I stretched out untiring hands and my soul refused to be comforted. I remembered You, O God, and I groaned; I mused, and my spirit grew faint. You kept my eyes from closing; I was too troubled to speak. ~Psalm 77:1-4
So how am I dealing with this, you might ask? Well, my sleep has definitely been affected. And not in a good way -- I'm just not able to sleep much. And when I do, I have dreams about packing and moving and strangers coming to our door and telling us to move. It's not that we didn't know that this might happen, and we absolutely knew we were going to have to move and that our dream house, that we designed and built just a few short years ago, was lost to us. But we really had high hopes that our lender would postpone the auction date as they had been doing, since there was a new pending offer, and that we could continue living here for just a little bit longer. But, that was not meant to be and instead the storm is getting more intense and therefore I've not been sleeping well (Bob either!) and also have huge knots in my stomach most of the time anymore.
I thought about the former days, the years of long ago; I remembered my songs in the night. My heart mused and my spirit inquired: "Will the Lord reject forever? Will He never show His favor again? Has His unfailing love vanished forever? Has His promise failed for all time? Has God forgotten to be merciful? Has He in anger withheld his compassion?" ~Psalm 77:5-9
We don't know, at this point, when we'll have to move. Obviously we are packing and trying to go through our stuff and figure out what furniture to sell and just get rid of as much stuff as we can. It's overwhelming right now! And ironically, after searching for a part-time job for myself for the past 2 years with no luck, I just got hired for a job at a place nearby that has a pumpkin chili festival during the month of October. So I will be working Thursdays through Sundays, throughout the month of October. Don't get me wrong, I'm grateful for this job (and Bob got hired, too! Yea!) However, I'm just a little overwhelmed when I think about the fact that I'm now going to be working part-time as I'm trying to get my house packed up as quickly as possible and maybe even be moving, all in the next several weeks! Of course, I also have kids to homeschool, a daughter in college who doesn't have a driver's license yet (can't afford the insurance), so I also have to get her to and from her classes on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and I still have my internet business that I don't want to abandon completely, along with all the day to day household chores and all. Wait! Maybe not being able to sleep at night could be a good thing! Like maybe I should just get up and work on packing when I can't sleep? Hmmmm. Something to consider. :) Probably the scariest part of this whole thing is, and what I'm losing the most sleep over is that we don't know how we are going to come up with the required deposits for renting a place, and we are also wondering HOW we are going to pay rent when Bob still doesn't have a full time job that pays a little better than what he's making with all the part-time jobs. Don't get me wrong, we are very grateful for the jobs he's working even though the pay is not nearly enough to sustain us completely. But when we add rent into the equation, well, we just don't know how we'll swing it. It's not a good feeling to not know how we are going to keep a roof over our heads! Oh, and did I mention that both of our cars are having issues? They at least are running, but poorly and therefore just sucking up the gas. But we're grateful that they both at least get us to where we need to go and hope that they will continue to do so for a good while longer.
Then I thought, "To this I will appeal: the years of the right hand of the Most High." I will remember the deeds of the LORD; yes, I will remember Your miracles of long ago. I will meditate on all Your works and consider all Your mighty deeds. ~Psalm 77:10-12
So we continue to trust that God is in control, and that none of this is a surprise to Him, and He will help us through this storm. However, we also covet your prayers as we go through this time. About the only thing that has truly sustained us as we've walked through this raging storm for the past 2+ years, is our faith in God and the prayers of all our family and friends. There have been days when I've been SO stressed out, tired and discouraged, and then something will happen to remind me that God truly does love me and is taking care of us even when I can't see it or feel it. Perhaps it was your prayer that lifted me up at that moment. So, if you would, PLEASE continue to lift our family up in prayer. We can feel them!
Your ways, O God, are holy. What god is so great as our God? You are the God who performs miracles; You display Your power among the peoples. ~Psalm 77:13-15
But now, this is what the Lord says: “Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze. For I am the Lord, your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior. ~Isaiah 43:1