Here is a story from our last 5 years that couldn’t fit in The Crazy God Story blog series…
January 2011. After our first year at the farmer’s markets…just after He “fed the 5000”…
Online Christmas sales were over.
We had three and a half months before the farmer’s markets started again and no potential income.
And we had very little in the bank.
Then God orchestrated one of the most creative provisions I have ever seen.
The winters in north Mississippi were enjoyable. Cold enough for steady fire in the woodstove but temperate enough to keep everything thawed regularly.
A few nights that winter the temperatures dipped lower than usual and stayed that way.
Finally, the sun returned, and we had the first above-freezing day we had had in a while. Ice was turning back to water and dripping off the eaves.
My oldest son found me, “Dad, come listen! We hear water dripping in the living room.”
Hmmmm. Ought not hear water in the living room.
I took off the A/C intake grate. We huddled around, staring bewildered at the cute little drip dropping onto the dusty 2x4s.
Huh. Guess we have us a little leak.
While we admired the little drip in the living room, on the other side of the wall, in the guest bedroom, the sound of water was much louder.
The water gurgled as it made its way down inside the wall, soaking insulation and studs, and making its exit triumphantly from underneath the baseboards along the length of the wall.
That beautiful, cold well water poured onto our laminate, particle-board wood-looking floor.
When we opened the door to the guest room, the water had already covered most of the floor.
Auuugh! We don’t have money for this!
I ran outside and turned off the water to the house.
With the water off, we threw down towels and blankets to soak up water and try to save the floor from swelling and buckling.
Then I looked up at the sheetrock ceiling to see a water spot slowly growing.
I am so excited.
The leak was in the attic.
By now I was hot.
I stormed up the attic stairs half expecting the entire attic to be awash with water. But, gratefully, the water was only puddled above the guest room.
But it was puddled.
I’m not a sheetrock installer!
I don’t have money for this!
I don’t have money for a $1000 deductible!
Is it JUST a $1000 deductible?!
(Notice how my thoughts in crisis rose high above my circumstances…to see God in control, in all His goodness.) (Surely my sarcasm is obvious…)
We threw wet insulation out the attic window. Two inches of water sat on top of the guest room ceiling.
We stuffed towels and blankets and children (not really) between the ceiling joists to soak up the water.
Grrrrr. Ratchen-fratchen, grumble, crank.
After we got some of the water soaked up, I sent Laura outside to turn on the water to the house. I didn’t want more water in the attic, but it was the only way I could find out where the leak was.
Laura turned on the water.
And water sprayed…
…from a 10 feet long split in the side of a pipe. The water sprayed evenly in a pretty fan shape, splashed against the attic ceiling, and quickly ran down under my feet, refilling the space between the joists.
“Turn off the water!” I yelled.
Water still gushed.
“Turn off the WATER!”
Pretty fan shape.
Laura yelled, coming into the house, “What?!”
What does she mean ‘What?’ What else might I be yelling…‘Turn UP the water’, maybe?
“TURN OFF THE WAAAAAATTTTTEEEEERRRRR!”
I growled like a grizzly.
Hyperventilate. Sit down.
We don’t have money for this!
What is God DOING?!
(I’m sure God was pleased to finally make it into my thought pattern…and in such a favorable way.)
The water was off again now, still dripping from the attic ceiling.
And still sitting on the sheetrock beneath my feet.
I moved sloppy towels around to soak up the new water.
Waiting for Laura to come back upstairs and help me plan, I sat there…stressed out and mad and pitiful all at once.
“We don’t have money for this,” I gritted through my teeth.
I waited for the insurance company.
In a very down and mopey way.
Bottom lip pouting.
…in spite of me…
…came the provision.
As the insurance company assessed damages, I realized God had set us up.
All the repairs that needed to be done were repairs that I could do. I am not a handyman, so this was an obvious miracle.
I asked the company if I could hire myself to do the work, and they agreed.
And there was the provision. God had sabotaged our plumbing to give us work and income.
I spent the next three weeks employed, paid to work at home…with the boys at my side when they could help.
I was paid enough to cover our monthly bills and the $1000 deductible.
How great is that?
Only God can hear His child’s prayer for provision and see a gap in pipe insulation and freezing temperatures as the perfect solution.
Who else thinks up stuff like that?
He is so creative.
He is unpredictable.
He’s a bit wild.
He is crazy.
A little side story related to this, if you’d like…
One day while reinstalling the floor, I stuck my pencil behind my ear trying to look like a real “fix-it man” like my friend, Randall.
When I did, the pencil broke one of the “arms” off my glasses.
I can’t see much without my glasses.
I can read about eight inches from my face or closer, but everything else is a blur.
The money coming from the insurance company was not enough for the bills and a new prescription and glasses.
So, I did what any southern feller would do: I used duct tape to put the arm back on and kept going.
Despite my valiant efforts with the duct tape, the glasses were crooked and gave me a headache (and looked stupid).
We prayed for new glasses and waited.
Then one day as I was rummaging through the van console, I found an eyeglasses case. Opening it I found an old pair of glasses I had put away years ago as an extra.
The old glasses have served me well.
I put them on again this morning.
Read the 12 part The Crazy God Story to hear more.