I blogged about this once before, I’m sure I did. Unfortunately, me, being me, gave it some obscure title, didn’t put it in any kind of category, and now can’t remember when it was. Oh well.
You get to hear this story again. I don’t mind. It’s a good one.
About three years ago I was pegging the washing on the line when God spoke to me quite clearly. I’d been praying (complaining to Heaven?) about our financial situation, and telling God how I felt about it honestly. I can’t honestly remember if I asked for anything or not. It was a washing prayer, a conversation like you’d have with your dad sitting on the patio chair, it wasn’t anything big or super-spiritual. But God spoke to me.
Now that in itself is possibly a bit contentious to some of you. God spoke to you Megan? At the clothesline? While you were pegging washing??!! Was the shrubbery on fire over in the corner? Did the bedsheet suddenly show the face of an angel? Did the Heavens open and a dove descend (and poop on your newly-washed trousers)?
No. Now shut up and let me finish. What do you think the virgin Mary was doing when the angel Gabriel appeared to her? Sitting around waiting for a miracle? I doubt it. She was probably pegging washing as well.
So God spoke to me. Well, at least, this thought popped into my head. (Aha! See, I can hear you scoffing again! Stop it! Sometimes that’s how God speaks to me. Seriously. And I’ve been listening for enough years to figure out pretty well by now what’s God, what’s me-having-random-thoughts, and what’s something else. Do I get it wrong sometimes? Yes, but that’s another story).
The thought was this, and this is also how I knew it was God: it wasn’t anything I’d ever think by myself. It was far too out-there for me to even imagine; if it were MY mind I’d make up something much more sensible, like “you’ll be provided for always”, or “don’t worry”. No. This is the thought that entered my head:
“I’m going to pay your mortgage off in three years.”
Now the first thing I thought of was the bible story of Abraham and Sarah, when God spoke to Abraham and said “I’m going to give you a son, even though you’re like, flippin’ ANCIENT and would be pretty much considered dead if you lived in the 21st century” (yes that is the Megan Sayer paraphrase), and how his wife cacked herself over it. And I thought: Don’t laugh.
I didn’t. I swallowed hard and said out loud, to the washing in general, “thank you.” And then I went inside and told my husband. (To his credit, he didn’t laugh either.)
Now, here’s some stuff that I believe: I believe that God is completely in love with us, his people, whether we know him or not, and whether we believe in Him or not (no, I’m not here to get into a theological argument of “if God loves us so much then why…” because I love MY children too, and that can’t fact alone doesn’t stop them from whacking each other with sticks) I believe He likes to talk to us. The day my nominally Catholic neighbour told me that she woke up one morning and thought “my ex-husband is going to call me today” and he did – I believe that was God telling her that. There are heaps of those experiences going round, for believers and non-believers alike. I believe it’s God, just like I believe that sometimes the way God speaks to us isn’t with words at all.
All that happened way back in 2010. My husband was working a part-time job and ran a small business. My youngest was two, and I was a stay-at-home mum with no income. Our mortgage payments were certainly not huge by mortgage standards, but they took up a lot of our small income, and we were about seven years in to a 30-year mortgage.
We made the last payment a week ago. I won’t bore you with technicalities, but in about six weeks we get to go into the bank and do all the paperwork we need to close it forever.
It’s okay. You can laugh now. Those words were true.
I’m going to go peg some more washing this morning (like I do every morning), and I’m going to look up to the Heavens again and say a big and heartfelt THANK YOU. And let me encourage you, my friend. Go peg some washing yourself. Go get honest with an empty patio chair. Pretend there’s someone sitting in it that loves you with a wild abandon. And, if unbidden thoughts of goodness and hope enter your brain don’t discount them. Don’t laugh. They may well be true.