September 4, 2015
Jeremiah 7:23-24 (NIV)
23 but I gave them this command: Obey me, and I will be your God and you will be my people. Walk in obedience to all I command you, that it may go well with you. 24 But they did not listen or pay attention; instead, they followed the stubborn inclinations of their evil hearts. They went backward and not forward.
1 Samuel 15:22 (NIV)
22 But Samuel replied:
“Does the Lord delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as much as in obeying the Lord?
To obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed is better than the fat of rams.
WHEN GOD SAYS NO
I once heard someone say that the only thing worse than waiting, is wishing you had waited. Sometimes God’s protection comes beautifully wrapped in the word No, or even the words Not Now. When we are clear that He has answered no or not now, and we willfully disobey His voice we will face grave consequences, and possibly years of regret.
Years ago my husband and I were looking for a new home to purchase. With a new baby in the family, we decided we had just about outgrown our small duplex. You see our baby came with toys and they were usually all over our tiny living room floor, no matter how much effort I put into trying to keep the floor clear and free of little objects that would possibly cause injury to someone who may just be strolling through, it was a constant struggle. I know that when we have small children that their toys come with the territory. Regardless of that, it was time for this child to have her own space with a cute little toy box in it.
In our quest to find a new place to live, we decided to call a Realtor. Finally, after months of looking we put an offer on what we thought was the perfect house for our family. We were bursting with excitement because we finally had found a house that we were equally as excited about.
There was a large front and back yard that our daughter could play in and the house was quite spacious. I was simply in love with the large master bedroom area. This master bedroom would be the perfect get a way at the end of a long day. There was even a perfect room for our daughter and all of her stuffed animals, dolls and other toys.
Once we decided that this would be our new home, we drove by several times to look at it. The more we looked at it the more excited we got about it.
The house was about ten to fifteen years old and some of the fixtures were quite dated. The kitchen wallpaper was screaming take me down, and I could not wait to do so. As an Interior Designer, I knew those things were an easy fix. I envisioned turning this house into the most gorgeous home for miles around.
We set up an appointment with the Realtor to start the long stressful process of filling out the paper work. After we were done, she told us that she would be contacting us in a few days. Finally, we heard back from her. When she called, she told us that the couple that we would be purchasing the home from was not willing to agree to some of our request. We had requested that the interior walls be repainted and that the very worn carpet be replaced. We did not think that this was an unrealistic request considering the price that they were asking for the house. We simply could not see paying what they were asking and still having to pay additional funds to have these things taken care of.
It seemed that whatever we asked, they were not willing to bend or even meet us half way on anything. It was like pulling teeth. After the second or third round of these unsuccessful exchanges our Realtor called and said once again, they would not agree and accept our offer. Bless her heart she was trying so hard to help us. I’m sure she was starting to be exhausted with the whole process because we certainly were. She knew how much I wanted that house and actually, my husband and I both were crazy about the house.
As I stood there, talking to her on the phone, I cupped my hand over the phone and I told my husband that once again they did not accept the offer. He looked at me and rolled his chair back from the desk where he was working and said “honey tell her that we are no longer interested in the house”. My heart sank. I told her what he said and she was just as shocked as I was. After I got off the phone, I said, ” What do you mean we are no longer interested in the house? ” I was just about in tears. In my mind, it was settled and that was my house, I just had to figure out the details.
He looked at me and said, ” this is too hard, and if this was the house that God had for us it would not be this hard to purchase it”. Then he said, ” I don’t know why, but we are not suppose to buy this house”. After he explained his thoughts on the matter I finally let it go, but my heart was sick over it.
After all of this we found out that the couple that was selling the house was going through a bitter divorce and they were not in agreement on any of the issues that had to do with selling the house because they were angry with one another and that’s why we could never seem to get an agreement on an offer.
Well my husband was definitely guided by the Holy Spirit on this one. Approximately two weeks after we had our final conversation with our Realtor, my husband got a call from a guy who worked for the same company that he worked for, but in a different state. He asked him if he had heard that the company was filing bankruptcy and that lots people were going to be laid off. My husband was in total shock. At this point, he had only worked for this company for a few months as a Regional Manager. After going on interview after interview and landing a job and finally thinking, now we can move forward with our lives, we find out that we were back to square one. Here my husband was the Regional Manager and his boss, nor anyone else had bothered to share this news with him, which had clearly been in the works for quite some time. Initially he thought it was a rumor but later that day the calls started pouring in as the word spread throughout the company. Within a few days, the company was out of business and my husband was out of a job.
For days, we walked around in shock thinking what just happened? Did we miss the initial signal? Was it really God’s will for him to accept this job in the first place? We had been praying also for quite some time for a new home for our family and my husband’s Regional Management position would have put us in a position financially to be able to easily afford a nice home, yet it all crumbled before our very eyes and before we could even reach out and touch it.
I am happy to say there is however, a blessing in every story if we don’t allow frustration and anger to consume us to a point that we don’t see that God’s hand is still at work even in the dark days. The difficulty in getting things to work out so that we could purchase the home all made sense finally. Had we been disobedient to God’s voice in this matter and pushed forward to purchase the home that we were so excited about, within two weeks of signing the papers we would have been stuck with a large house payment and no job to make the payments with. I was a stay at home mom taking care of our little daughter everyday, had we signed those papers I would have probably had to send her to a day care full-time so that I could go to work to help my husband make the payments. Her little world would have changed also.
After we got pass the shock of my husband loosing his job we thanked God for protecting us from purchasing that home. I thanked God for prompting my husband to just release it and back away. I learned 5 valuable lessons from this experience that I would likely share with you today.
God sees the whole picture. He can see so much farther down the road than we can. God’s No is for our protection. We should accept it, even if we don’t understand it.
Don’t try to push through closed doors or brick walls.
Just because we want something so badly we can taste it, doesn’t mean that it is what’s best for us.
When you are married to a Praying Godly man, the Holy Spirit is guiding him so be willing to listen when he make suggestions. It could be for your own protection.
God’s timing is perfect!
When the time is right God will provide exactly what you need, and many times, He far exceeds our expectations.
Psalm 37:7 (NIV)
Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him; ……
Psalm 46:10 (NIV)
10 He says, “Be still, and know that I am God; ……