Yes, I know Fall actually started a few weeks ago. The season I am referring to is a possible new season of life for us. Just like the gradual shift of hot, sticky summer days to the crisp coolness of Autumn, I don't expect the changes to be dramatic. Initially. But hopefully after today we will have direction. A firm commitment. A regular income.
It's been nine months since Sean's job had a "work force reduction." As the newest kid on the block, he wasn't surprised. And God had gone before us to prepare a place to wait out the storm. He has been so faithful to us, providing for our needs, giving us strength, hope and joy in the midst of a challenging time.
We've lived and learned a lot during this leaner time. Our family has grown closer, and we seem to value things more. Who could complain about that?
An extra $5.00 to spend is a delicious luxury full of anticipation and lots of planning. I don't want that to go away, the appreciation of even small splurges. A cup of coffee (Starbucks!) A new craft project at Michaels. An outfit or two either on clearance or at the 50% day at the thrift store. I've been a frugalistic frugalista forever and shop regularly at discount & thrift stores. The difference these days has been the frequency and the more careful perusal of what we really need versus what we just want.
Like I stated above, God has really provided for us during this time - we've had food, shelter, money enough to pay our bills, and I am so grateful for His faithfulness to His promises. Jehovah Jireh, our Provider. The One Who sees the need ahead of time and makes provision. It may not come in the way we imagined, but it does come!
The difficulties during this time have mostly been with people who don't understand. (Unless you walk through a situation like this, it IS hard to understand what it's like. My level of compassion has increased as my empathy increased for others - understanding that comes from experience.) This occurred several years ago during another lean time but is fairly representative of what has happened even in recent times. I remember being at a thrift store with a friend and choosing between outfits. She questioned why I was putting some items back - why I don't just buy that $2.00 dress at the thrift store since it's only $2.00, what's $2.00? I explained that I only had $10.00 to spend and needed to make the best choices. For a moment I thought she understood until she replied that she tries to do the same but since it's a thrift store, she just withdraws the extra if she finds more that she wanted to buy. Why don't I just use my bank card if I didn't have enough cash? Then my daughter found a beautiful specialty doll that she wanted desperately that was $10.00. Kind of expensive for a thrift store but it'd cost a lot more elsewhere. I knelt down and gently explained that we couldn't get the doll. Touched by her attachment, her little brother implored me to get that doll for her. With silent tears, I even called Mr. Nice Guy to ask if there was any way, but it was the doll or gas money. The three of us held each other and cried, then put the doll back. God still provided for us as she was blessed by another beautiful, specialty doll soon after by her loving aunt.
The beautiful times far outweigh the challenges. Because God is good. He is with us always and His Word is true.
Today Mr. Nice Guy took a plane to a very important meeting out of state. I am still waiting to hear how everything went, but only God could have orchestrated the events that led to today. The opportunity for Mr. Nice Guy is incredible and would utilize his experience, creativity and giftings as a storyteller and filmmaker. More details to follow. Regardless of today's outcome, I have peace knowing God is watching over us.