I can picture myself sitting at the kitchen table staring at my computer, dread washing over me when I read the email: a sewer disaster in the rental house we owned, two states away.
My poor tenant had emailed me a long description of what happened, including sewage spilling all over the master bathroom and out onto the bedroom carpet… the liquid soaking into the drywall, the floorboards, the cabinets, and into the basement.
The management company was getting this information at about the same time, and though they were helpful, I knew this was going to be a huge issue I was going to have to deal with.
I say “I,” and not “we” because my husband was deploying four days after I got this email. As much as he would like to have helped, he couldn’t.
On top of that, on the day he was to deploy, we would also be getting the keys to our home that we were about to move into.
So ya– husband deploying, me solo-parenting two small kids, plus moving to another house without his help, and now a sewage disaster requiring insurance phone calls (where you’re on for like hours), getting it cleaned out, hiring a contractor, and managing the repairs/design from 1200 miles away.
Easy, peasy right?
Oh, and did I mention I was 7 months pregnant?
The stress was absolutely immense. The weight of all I was experiencing and about to endure wedged itself permanently in the back of my mind.
But something amazing happened.
The fact that I didn’t have a nervous breakdown was amazing in itself, but it was something I did have that causes me still to marvel.
I had peace.
Complete, total, mind-body-soul-wrapping peace.
The problems at the back of my mind didn’t go away, but they didn’t snarl out and drag me into dispair either.
I had to deal with each issue, day by day, minute by minute. I cried. I was exhausted. I got fed up with the insurance calls and the confusion and the crap (figurative crap like when my kids drove me nuts, and literal crap from overflowed pipes).
I can’t explain it.
The Bible explains it like this:
“The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:5b-7
You guys, this happened for me. I just felt God’s peace and His presence in it all. I knew He would help me. I didn’t know how it would all turn out, but I knew I would be ok.
His peace was beyond my understanding, and it guarded my heart and my mind.
Thank you Jesus.
I can picture myself sitting at that kitchen table staring into space. Praying through my fears, my complaints, my requests… listening for how HE wanted to interpret my situation.
I could see the facts, the bad stuff, the hard stuff.
He could see all that… but He could also see the beauty, the blessing, the way He was still in control when I felt like everything was out of control.
He helped me to see it His way. And the peace was real and lasting.