A few weeks ago a dear friend gave us a computer – out of the blue.
We really needed a second computer, but couldn’t begin to figure out how we could buy one. Then, BAM, just like that, before we’d hardly wrapped our minds around it, the problem was solved.
A few days later, another couple we barely know stopped by with a brand new vacuum.
Ours was broken and we’d put the word out that we were in the market for a used or hand-me-down machine. But here it was, NEW, in the box, with a bow on top. I sat the box in the living room and watched the children dance around it in excitement when they got home from school.
Then, when I was off writing at Panera on a Saturday afternoon, my husband found a drafting table set out for free on the curb, just down the road from our house. Exactly the kind of table I’ve always loved, exactly the kind of desk I’ve always wanted.
This was shortly after we put in the verbal offer on the farm house of our dreams – the “long-shot” offer that fell short of the negotiating table and we were discouraged.
“Do you realize,” I said to my husband one evening, “that in just a little over a week we’ve been given a computer, a vacuum, and a table? It’s crazy, isn’t it?”
“You’re right,” he said, “I hadn’t really thought about it that way.”
“I can’t feel it, though,” I added, “It’s like, I should feel something, but I can’t.”
It was right around the week of Thanksgiving and I was writing and speaking about gratitude, but I couldn’t feel it, because all I wanted to do was send God a little memo that said something like:
Thanks for the computer, and vacuum and table,
but what we really need is a house.
Maybe you could just try to focus on that??
My guess is that God gets quite a few letters like that. Maybe you’ve sent one too?
I didn’t mean to be ungrateful, but my eyes were stuck somewhere in the distance, scanning the horizon, so much so that I almost missed the gifts of Presence scattered at my feet.
Because what I want, truly, is to know that God is with us. I can wait for a house, if I can be certain that God is in the waiting too.
Shifting my focus, I saw those gifts – the computer, the vacuum, the table – as so many memos, straight from the hand of God and they read something like this:
I see you.
I know your needs.
I love you.
And, yo, chill about this house deal,
I’m workin’ on it.