Sunday, April 29, 2012

Life as a Vagabond

The kids and I have become nomads, vagabonds…not gypsies per se.

We have absolutely no kitchen and no laundry room. There is dust everywhere in my house, and Pearce has horrible allergies and asthma – poor little fella. For a week and a half we lived at my in-laws house while they were out of town and now for a week with my parents. Shuffling back and forth from house to house having no real place for our clothes…it has gotten old. I wish I could twitch my nose and it be all done, but it doesn’t work like that. After working all day on remodeling and repairing other people’s homes the last thing Patrick wants to do is come home and work on this one. I don’t blame him, but he has buckled down and is knocking it out. I may be living out of a travel trailer next week…who knows! I try to see it as an adventure, but when my nerves are shot it’s more like the show Survivor.

It can be quite unsettling and keeps you off-balance when you have no place to settle your nest or your brood. Put yourself in Sarai’s shoes or sandals if you will. From Ur to Haran. From Haran to Canaan. From Canaan back to Negev. From place to place until Bethel. She sets up her tent and household. Gets everything out of boxes, finds the best place to sell and buy goods, locates the church, gets established with her physician and then it’s time to move…AGAIN. And it wasn’t just Sarai that was moving. It was a whole passel of people. Is it no wonder why there were arguments between Lot’s herdsmen and Abram’s? Seriously, you add women in the mix of that too and hormones…seriously stressing situation. Then add to all that loveliness the fact that the land could not support Abram and Lot’s family. It was time to part ways. It isn’t easy to part ways with someone you love even under the best of circumstances. Abram offered Lot first dibs. You know, to me that says volumes because in reality, Abram should have chosen first because he was the leader of the tribe. A leader who gives first to others… I like it.

So Lot makes his choice, and I found something interesting in Genesis 13:12. It says, “Abram lived IN the land of Canaan, while Lot lived AMONG the cities of the plain and pitched his tents near Sodom.” It appears that Abram finally can settle down some. Get some roots in the land God has promised him. What a relief that must have been! But Lot doesn’t find that pleasure. His choice has led him to a very uncomfortable place. He isn’t at home really in any of the cities yet he lives among them. He places his tents near Sodom. Have you ever been someplace where you knew you shouldn’t be? Ever felt uncomfortable somewhere? Have you ever been somewhere and felt the hair on the back of your neck stand on end? It’s because you aren’t supposed to be there. Get yo’ tiny hiney out!

When Lot made his choice, he based his choice on the things he could see – well-watered plain of Jordan like the Garden of Eden. Lot chose to go east towards Sodom and Gomorrah. While his choice was selfish and self-preserving, he gave little thought to Abram and his needs. Lot gave little thought about the contents of the cities before him. We don’t see or hear Lot praying to God for guidance. Have you made a big decision based on what you could see? When Patrick and I were looking for places to live in Dallas, we would drive through apartment complexes at different times of the day and night on different days. We want to know how loud it was, what kind of people lived there, and I checked with the police station regarding how often they had to respond to certain complexes. It wasn’t until we actually moved into a complex that we would know who our neighbors were. The Bible says in Genesis 13:13, “Now the men of Sodom were wicked and were sinning greatly against the Lord.” I think if Lot had done a thorough job, he would have gone down to the proposed site and walked around to see the happenings and to meet the natives…know what I mean? But Lot made his choice and now he has to deal with the consequences.

Abram, on the other hand, has a conversation with God and takes a walk to inspect what God has given him. What does Abram do next? He builds an altar. There is a right way to make a decision, and it begins with talking to the Lord. It doesn’t end there though. Abram put his feet to follow. He did what he was instructed to do. And then, Abram gave thanks.

Sometimes it is uncomfortable going through changes. It’s uncomfortable growing in our faith. It’s unsettling and keeps us off-balance at times, but God has a purpose. He doesn’t waste anything. He may have to gut everything and start over. You may be inconvenienced. You may come to odds with a friend or loved one, but in it all, God has a plan. Matthew 6:33 says, “Seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be provided.” Trust that He has a plan for you.

PS Stay tuned -- I'll post pictures of my new kitchen when my talented husband gets through.

1 comment:

  1. You're an inspiration. Thank you


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