In March of 2007, the school for whom I worked for six years eliminated my job position. With that surprise, my husband and I faced some important decisions. One decision dealt with selling our home. It was our dream home we built from scratch on land owned by our ancestors.
I applied at nearby districts, but no one hired me. An educator of 15 years, I earned many degrees and certifications over time. Instead of being an advantage, these only impeded me in obtaining a new job. I heard many times, “You’re over-qualified.” That really meant I would cost the district twice the amount as a new inexperienced teacher.
Then I applied for teaching and consulting positions all around the Iowa and other states, and in July, I landed an interview in the opposite side of the state. Within two weeks I secured the job. This meant I had to move. It also meant my husband and I would be separated for five months until he could retire. The beginning of the housing crunch reared its ugly head. People looked at our home, but either weren’t approved or bought another home.
As a Christian, I trusted the Lord to help us sell our home. Fear of being alone in a new area, constant ups and downs of thinking the house sold only to learn it fell through, concerns of losing the home and damaging our testimony, embarrassment in losing my job and not securing another one – all these concerns set my emotions in a continuous struggling state.
After securing the job, more concerns arose. I had two weeks before starting my new job. I had to find a place to live, decide what to haul to my place, and how to do this in such a short time period. The Lord helped us with these decisions. However, the cost of living in two different locations took its toll on our finances. Utilities, water, and LP fuel bills strapped us immensely. In December, an ice storm where I lived crippled our city for days. Again I was alone and struggled to keep warm. The Lord took care of me.
Early in January, my husband retired and joined me in Mount Ayr. We praised the Lord together for this reunion. However, our country home remained unsold. Lights, water, fuel, and heat bills remained a struggle. We finally signed over our home to our bank, and three months later a realtor agent sold it for half of its value. We saw nothing in money except a stain on our credit which was excellent previously.
At times I questioned the Lord’s love for me, His concern for me, and His sense of fairness in our personal matters. Yet, I continued to pray and trust Him in all things. Moving away meant leaving our church, family, and friends. However, the Lord in His goodness led us to a new church home and friends. We visit our family members as often as possible. After three years of working in my new job, I retired and decided to write children’s books.
No matter how bleak things seem, the Lord is faithful, even when it seems like He’s not listening to our prayers. The following verses are precious to me:
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not to your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your paths.” Proverbs 3:5-6
“When I am afraid, I will trust in You.” Psalms 56:3
Have you suffered loss lately or in the past? How did you cope with it? Thanks for sharing with me. I hope my experience encourages you today.