I Cannot See the Bottom Line

A friend of mine is my optometrist. I always enjoy going because it’s another chance to see John and catch up with what’s going on in our lives. The only part of the visit I do not necessarily care for is the exam involving the eye chart. One of the questions on said exam goes something like this, “Tell me the lowest line you can read clearly.” The older I get it seems the further up the chart my answer is. One thing is for sure… I cannot see the bottom line. And so it is on days like today.

At the end of week #7 of having our house up for sale… we have a contract in hand and – it would seem – an able buyer. In this short journey I have learned many lessons about myself & my faith in God.

We started with a bang – many races begin that way. We were excited. We were full of “spiritual energy”. We had plenty of faith and our words demonstrated that reality. “God will sell this house in His perfect time”, we said to many people. I think we even believed it. I We had also pre-determined that God could help Himself get noticed the best by selling it in the least amount of time.

The much more difficult part for us (and most racers) was that middle part – the part between the start & finish… one of my friends has a phrase he calls “the muddy middle”. While there are middles to avoid, I think this is one that each of us must not only go through, but also learn to enjoy. I found myself wondering if the house would be sold “in time” for us to move… wondering what we would do if it didn’t sell… wondering how 2 mortgages could be part of the picture as we are living on an already-trimmed-down budget. In the middle of my trust there was also plenty of doubt.

Then it happened… we sold the house… but the bottom line was now the blurriest it has been. In fact, I cannot see the bottom line.

I have at least half a dozen friends who also have houses for sale. Are we better than them? More connected? I don’t think that’s how God works. One of our friends is doing the exact same thing we are – starting a church. Their house is still empty and has been on the market already 13 months.

But this is the kind of Christianity I want to be a part of… not some formulaic religion that puts the coin in the top and out comes the candy at the bottom. We all know that these kinds of things seem to be imbalanced and without pattern. What we have difficulty reconciling is why God would allow one person’s house to sell and not others. I don’t know. It doesn’t have to make sense to me. I do know that God is running things. And even when I cannot see the bottom line I am following the One who can. I only hope I can say these same words if the deal does not go through… that’s the bottom line.

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