Friday, January 23, 2015

When God "Sneaks Up" on You

The day began like any other. I got up and awakened my daughter to get ready for the day. She went to her school and I went to mine. After a long day working as secretary to one of the assistant principals at the local high school, I went home and did a little house cleaning.

At 7:00, Rachel and I were to meet with one of the family selection committee members for our local Habitat for Humanity. This woman had not been able to attend our earlier group interview back in September. She wanted to meet us and ask a few questions before she gave her input to the decision-making process.

Image found here
We arrived at the Habitat Re-Store right on time, and found the parking lot was full. I didn't think too much of it. My thought was that the Re-Store was really hopping on a Friday night. Little did I know that God was sneaking up on me with a wonderful surprise.

I was met at the office door and invited in. I was told that the lady we were to meet was shopping in the Re-Store, and we would go find her there. Rachel and I followed her into the Re-Store, where Habitat for Humanity sells good-condition used items.A lot of people were looking around the store, and my thought was that Friday night must be a good night for shopping. I still didn't realize God was sneaking up on me.

Then, I saw a gentleman who had been involved in our first interview. He was holding a camera. "That's John over there, isn't it?" I asked, wanting to confirm that I remembered his name. The fact that he was holding a camera didn't stir the slightest suspicion that God was sneaking up ever closer.

Someone came up to my escort and said something about making an announcement, I honestly thought she meant to get on the intercom system and call for the woman we were supposed to meet. But that wasn't what she meant.

Derrick the Oiler,
the University of Findlay mascot.
I heard something like this, "We are happy to welcome you as our newest Habitat for Humanity Homeowners". I looked around and realized everyone in the crowd of about 50 people, many of whom had fresh, young faces, were looking at us. Everyone...including Derrick, the tall and brawny mascot of the University of Findlay. It took a few seconds for the surprise to sink in. After well over a year and a half of not being certain where Rachel and I would live long term, God has finally given direction.

Of course, I obviously knew that they were considering us to become Habitat Homeowners, but I had been preparing myself for them to choose someone else. I had accepted the fact that whichever way the decision went, that was the way we were to go. I was certainly not at all expecting the answer to come tonight. God had snuck up on me so very quietly with this delightful surprise.

So, what comes next? I will have close contact and support from a committee that will walk us through the next several months. Construction of the walls will begin in the spring. The sections will then be stored over the summer. In September, after the students return to college, they will build the house. As I understand it, the basic framework goes up pretty much in one day - much like an Amish barn-raising. After that the whole process will be done in a couple of months. We should be in our new home by November.

I look forward to getting to know the students from the University of Findlay who will actually be building our house. These students are just a few years older than the teens I worked with in Indonesia. It will be good to spend time with them. I hope that in some way, I can touch their lives as much as they will certainly touch ours.

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