Thank-you, Lord

I think most of you know that we still own a house in Colorado. It’s a Colorado Springs address, although it’s ten miles east of the springs.
We haven’t been able to sell it. We do have renters. Mostly, we break even, until they want something repaired and then we lose the entire cost of the repairs.

It is sand in my shoe, a blister on my lip, a canker on my gums.

But I wasn’t worried about it with all the fires- worrying wouldn’t help anything or make a bit of difference. Whatever happened would happen, and sufficient unto the D. is the E. thereof, as Bertie Wooster would have said if he quoted scripture.

Yesterday, it became a punch in the gut. Yes, it’s still standing- it’s east of the Springs and the fires are in other places.

But through a comedy of errors (insert hollow and very unamused laughter), our Colorado Springs house become uninsured yesterday. The insurance company canceled our insurance in April because the renters have a few ducks and chickens and there’s a hole in the siding (about which we know nothing). There is a chicken coop on the property that we built and we always had chickens, so I am not sure what the big deal is. But the thing is, the insurance company claims they sent us two notifications which we never received. They sent them to Shasta and the Equuschick’s house, but it’s very possible the postal service never delivered them since we don’t live there, and it probably looked like junk mail.

At any rate, OUR first notification that the insurance was canceled came when the mortgage company called and left an automated message. It didn’t specify which house we were talking about, and I knew the Colorado house insurance wasn’t due yet, so I wasn’t too worried.

My husband came home and said no insurance was due yet, he didn’t know what this was about. So, even though he was hot and tired, (it was a hundred degrees yesterday and he worked at the airport), filthy (and this is a man who loves his showers), and sick (he caught my cold), he started making some phone calls.

An hour later, this is where we were:
No insurance, and only amazed disbelieve that we expected ANYBODY to issue insurance on a house with a Colorado Springs address at this time.
Yeah, we sent it to the wrong address, your notification, but we sent it three months ago so it’s not our problem, go suck eggs.

And that, they said, was that.

I had a very bad few hours. I had many things to say to many people, and they were all things that should not be said. Actually, they were pretty much all things that shouldn’t even be thought. I was sick to my stomach. I was worried and afraid. I indulged in some very sinful bitterness against God. How COULD he let this happen to us? I wanted to cry. I wanted to throw things. I wanted to blog about and lash my words out all over the screen, indulging in the selfish relief of invective and blame, blame explained in scathing words of stinging, burning scorn and fury. I won’t give you the list of people and places I wanted to blame, so don’t ask, but pretty much nobody was immune, from the chickens in the renters backyard right on up the link to anybody who was, however tentatively,remotely, distantly, connected to that house, to the insurance company, to every insurance company, to friends and family members. I was, in my head and soul, seething like a overful pot, I was frantically ranting and raging deep within myself.
Outwardly, I appeared to be merely reading something on my laptop. I wasn’t reading. I wasn’t rational enough to read anything. I just could not believe the timing of all this, and I was taking it very personally.

In a very short time in my head the house had burned to the ground and we were billed for the remainder of the mortgage and sued by the mortgage holder and lost everything and were living in a seedy motel and the children hated us for making them live this way. My head is a dangerous and scary place to be.

And then slowly, slowly, I turned my back to the wall against which I was fruitlessly, bloodily banging my head in frantic fear and pointed out some things to myself. I was acting like the insurance itself protected the house from the fire- like it was a barrier against the fire. But my house was no more in danger of being burned down with or without the insurance, it was protected by Somebody much bigger than that, and if it wasn’t, well, that was His plan, too, and insurance would have nothing to do with it one way or the other. How big was my faith?

And even if my faith was a weak and pitiable thing, what could all my rage accomplish? It was long after business hours, half the businesses in the Springs that we might have called were evacuated anyway, and these people were worried about losing homes they lived in, homes where things they loved would go up in smoke- pictures, mementos, and possibly pets. Firefighters were risking their lives. If we lost the Springs house, we lost it- we had nothing in it we cared about but there are renters who care, who presumably have things in the house they cherish- and of course, there are all the lives involved across all the states where fires are burning now. Who did I think I was?

And, again, what could I do? Nothing. My circumstances would not be changed by my rage, my fears, my tears, my gut being clenched tightly in a knot- none of this would alter a single thing for the better. Who of you by worrying about tomorrow, and all that. I know that. I knew that. I didn’t act like I knew it (at least in my head)- but I knew it.

I trust that God is in control. But even if I did not trust that, it would be stupid and pointless to freak out. it would be stupid and pointless to shout, to throw things, or to blame anybody- nobody caused this- it was just an accumulation of small errors that added up to one big horrible situation. Nobody did anything to us on purpose, nobody did anything that could be fixed by invective (do they ever)?

And so I prayed, and calmed down, and worked myself up again, and prayed and calmed down again, and the cycle continued, although each time I worked myself up just a little bit less, and a little bit less. And at last I went to bed with a smile for the future, and the knowledge that it truly was, as so many things are, out of my hands, so I could stop clenching them.

This afternoon my husband called and we have insurance on the house. It’s short-term, and we have to tell the renters they can’t keep the poultry. But our goal is to take time later and find an insurance company that won’t care about the poultry. Meanwhile, we have insurance on a house ten miles from Colorado Springs and last night we didn’t. Thank-you, Lord.

And thank-you, Lord, for forgiving my foolish ways.

As for you, Gentle Readers, I was relieved, when all was said and done, that I had not indulged myself in the blessed by shortlived relief of onscreen invective. Apologies are so embarrassing when the have to be made over embarrassing and regrettable behavior.

In the space of two hours I probably committed a hundred sins without ever opening my mouth, leaving my seat, or looking at anything questionable. It was all only in my head. You wouldn’t have to know. Nobody would have to know, not ever. But confession is good for the soul.


(Thanks, Cindee, the link should be fixed now.)

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