Tuesday, June 15

a pretty steep learning curve!

Last weekend, the plans for our "build" accompanied us to the cottage. And as you can see - Alvin poured over them just a little! I am still in awe of all that this man of mine knows... and all that he can do. God has generously gifted Alvin!

And then there is me. Who would have thought that I would become involved in this build in more than just as a spectator! You have to know that I -
I am learning a lot. I have met with Denise at Huron Windows. I have bought magazines and looked at pamphlets. I have driven by houses and taken some pictures of colors I liked on the front siding! I have talked with the municipality about our business license. Today I talked with Manitoba Conservation about our septic system, and have a message in for the Environmental Officer to call. Sounds like a steep learning curve - and it is.... believe me... it's a VERY STEEP LEARNING CURVE!! Actually - I am beginning to enjoy it! Go figure.

We are chomping at the bit to get going... hoping to finally get the building permit (Lord willing tomorrow) to begin on the barn/shop. The planning office does have our stamped house plans in their possession now. (we owe our brother Rick BIG TIME on this one!)

Today Alvin spoke with the plan inspector (or whatever he is called) and now we have found out that in order to make our basement a "walk-out" with a door - that means we would have to bring in HUGE amounts of fill and the house would be very very high... so we are thinking of taking OUT the door on the one side (there are other ways into the lower level without this door anyhow) and then it would solve some of the issue that arose today.

It is quite something - I will be honest. I am so amazed at how complex and complicated this whole journey has been. Today I was thinking - so what happens if "this" doesn't work - or what happens if "that" doesn't work ~ but then I thought... "NO, this is the Lord's Vision and HE is in control, and we are only the vessels he is using to bring it to fruition...so it will all work." I still stick to my latest mantra "If you want to make God laugh, tell him your plans!"

Lately, we have been holding the "plans" very loosely in our hands. Very VERY loosely!
It is in the second half of June. We have not begun YET. But soon, Lord willing, very very soon.

I will admit that I was thinking that my man and I needed to have a talk. I have been praying that as a family - we will come out of this build "intact" meaning that I know there will be some intense times as a family - perhaps some long days - toss in some high summer temps and some mosquitoes - and being that my husband is very used to working long days...
As the wife and mom, I am concerned that we will be good at setting boundaries regarding the build ~ and that we will NOT expect our kids to work the same long hours, and that we will not put pressures on ourselves for deadlines. YEP, I was thinking that Alvin and I needed to have a talk together. But God took care of that too - and during our convertible drive to Thunder Bay a month ago, Alvin and I did a lot of talking and before I could raise it - he said that he was not going to put a "deadline" on the build - and did not want to add pressure! And when it is done - it is done. You have to know that I was so glad to hear him say that...
I am thinking that by this time next week - perhaps we will be pouring the shop floor... or who knows, maybe there will be another "delay" beyond our control!

Sometimes I just have to laugh... it is the best answer for our delays! God knows.... He knows the timeline totally. He is in control of HIS vision... totally in control. I believe that!

Today, I got the following devotional in my inbox... it seemed timely. It is from Proverbs 31 Ministries, and I get a devotional daily. Today it really spoke into my life... you will probably be able to figure out which part and why! Here is is - perhaps part or all of it will touch you the same way it touched me.

- Amy Carroll

"'But the Lord forbid that I should lay a hand on the Lord's anointed. Now get the spear and water jug that are near his head, and let's go.'" I Samuel 26:11 (NIV)

He had the perfect opportunity not once, but twice, yet he waited. Twice David faced a tempting decision. Should he kill the vulnerable king or wait on God's timing? David chose to wait while seemingly living out "Plan B."

David spent years waiting between the time he was anointed as the king of all Israel to the time when he officially wore the title. They were years spent in fields with sheep, in the palace as the reigning king's musician, and in caves on the run from Saul's murderous rage. However, the Psalms record for us that David never lost faith. Instead of despairing that "Plan A" would never surface and come to fruition, David declared, "But I am like an olive tree flourishing in the house of God; I trust in God's unfailing love for ever and ever. I will praise you forever for what you have done; in your name I will hope, for your name is good. I will praise you in the presence of your saints" (Psalm 52:8-9, NIV).

He trusted that God would never waste one moment, circumstance or trial. He steadfastly believed that each incident could be used to bring about God's promise that had been given years before. He held fast to the hope that he would someday be king without taking matters into his own hands.

That day finally came. After lamenting Saul and Jonathan's deaths, David inquired of the Lord, followed His directions and declared himself as king. David was ready to step into God's perfect plan in God's perfect timing. He never looked back to the fields and caves, but rather walked forward into his destiny with all the experience and wisdom God had given him through the many steps it took to get there.

I've had to make similar decisions as I've asked myself these questions: Do I wait for God's promise to be fulfilled in His time or do I work to make something happen in my own strength? While I'm waiting to walk in the fullness of what I believe He's called me to, will I trust Him to use each step along the way for my good and His glory? When it's finally time to move into a new season of promises fulfilled, will I walk forward into that exciting new place or will I look back over my shoulder and choose to stay where it's safe and known?

These are the decisions that have been facing me this year. Over a year ago, I heard God whisper a calling and a promise into my heart. I could look back and see how all my education, previous jobs and experiences have been building blocks for this dream. At times, some of those places have seemed like "Plan B," but they never were. Each step of obedience has brought me to this new place.

In February, I had to make a decision to stay in my job or leave for something new. It's a job that I have been called to in the past, but this time God said "no." He brought me to the realization that choosing this job over the calling would be to choose "Plan B" and furthermore, it would be disobedience. God always calls His children to walk on the "Plan A" path. There may be discomfort, waiting, and trials on this path, but obedience is always "Plan A" and where the blessings lie!

Dear Lord, help me to always walk in Your "Plan A" even when it's hard. I want to make choices in Your perfect timing that lead me forward with You instead of simply staying where it's safe. In Jesus' Name, Amen.


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