Jehovah Jireh

For the past year, I have been living in Camino house – technically the rectory of a parish in which our intentional Christian community was once planted. It has been a year of sharing prayer, food, mission, hospitality, fun times and struggles with 6 or 7 beautiful adults and two adorable twins whom I have come to love very dearly. We have had friends and family stay with us or enjoy meals with us. We have people on the margins of society – people who are rejected elsewhere but whom I can genuinely call my friends. On thursday evenings, we have open meal and we can have anywhere from 10 to 30 people over for a meal! It has been such a beautiful and transformative experience for me that I expect living in community will be something I will continue doing for a long time.

Sadly, the relationship between our community and that of the parish has disintegrated, leading to hostility and persecution, ultimately culminating in the parish severing their relationship with us and officially evicting both members of Camino house and our community from the worship space as of September 30. I am grieved by what is done in the name of Christ and saddened that a community that prays daily together, is involved in mission and presence in the neighbourhood, that ministers to the sick and the poor, and that gathers for fellowship and carrying one another’s burdens has become a community that is a ‘distraction’. Moreover, I am saddened even more to watch a parish lose it’s focus, with its leadership denying the resurrection of our Lord, and it’s focus being on hikes and pub nights. How this must all grieve the heart of our Lord who sent His son for the salvation of His people.

I have often been asked how I am doing with all the changes and the need in particular to move and people have expressed their sadness and concern that I have moving to deal with on top of everything. Honestly, I haven’t been worried. I have said to people that I have been ‘homeless’ before and God provided.

The day that I met with my pastor’s wife and we made the unexpected phone call to children’s aid, I knew that night that I could not go home. They offered their home. Soon after I found an apartment and started a new job, only to be laid off and without money. My aunt and uncle offered their home for me for the summer as a place of refuge and comfort. During one particularly dark period in my life, I wasn’t exactly homeless, but because of where I was emotionally, my own apartment was not safe for me to be alone in. And so some good friends took me in for a few months. Then a pipe broke in one apartment causing the ceiling to literally cave in and water everywhere. It took a month for my landlord to completely fix the apartment and make it a place where I could live in. I’ve locked myself out of my apartment and friends have always come to the rescue at a moment’s notice. Over and over, God has shown me that He WILL provide.

On Friday, something happened that made it very clear to me that I need to move sooner than expected – by July 1 at the very latest. It was then that I felt anxiety and worry – for how could I find a place in just a couple of weeks that would be suitable for both me and my cat? Would my beloved Shalom and I be separated for two months? A friend of mine called me that afternoon and brainstormed ideas. That brought some comfort in that there were possibilities. But these possibilities were outside my city. This would make it hard for me to partake in all the stuff I was looking forward to doing this summer. But it was good to know that there was a back up.

I hosted a party that night, so I decided to ignore temporarily the stress of finding something and moving.    I had many friends over from various churches I’ve been to for African food themed party. It was awesome!

Then Saturday, I posted on facebook to hit up my networks to find out if there were options for me and shalom. My wonderful friends all began to hit up their networks. Within a few hours (!) a friend had offered to share her whole house with me and Shalom. And it gets better – she has asked that I pay utilities and has generously said that I do not need to pay rent. So I have two months without having to pay rent which will give me a financial cushion that I don’t already have!

Today I am reminded of a song I learned – “Jehovah Jireh, my provider/ His grace is sufficient for me, for me, for me. My God shall supply all my needs/ According to his riches and glory/ he will give his angels charge over me/ Jehovah Jireh cares for me!”

Today, I rejoice and praise Jehovah Jireh, my God.

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  1. naomi
    June 12, 2012 at 9:19 am

    Hey Elizabeth,
    I feel sad that I can’t be around to support. Thinking of you.

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