Published: October 22, 2022
Updated: November 4, 2022
This week my thoughts have often turned to the subject of floors. In the past, we have lived in many different homes. A couple of them have been quite old, perhaps dating from the 1800's. An old house has a certain degree of charm or character that cannot be found in more modern houses. But there are other things that are not so charming. The first older house we moved into definitely had something that we did not have in the newer houses. It had a floor with a surprising entry into the basement. One day I walked into one of the rooms and fell through the floor until I was hip deep into the basement. Surprising to say the least!
I read a story of a sad accident in a small town. When over 100 people gathered in a small room built over a garage, the floor gave way under the weight and the crowd fell through the splintered wood. While no one was injured seriously, several needed medical treatments. Pressures, circumstances, even cruel evils threaten to destroy our lives. Prolonged illness, extended periods of no job, betrayal by those we thought friends make us feel as though everything we trusted to provide stability has disappeared and we seem to fall through the floor. I have been there in my personal life.
It is not fun when you feel betrayed.
Apostle Paul knew what it was like to live with “collapsing floors.” He wrote to his friends and said, “We are hunted down, but God never abandons us. We get knocked down, but we get up again and keep going…We live under constant danger to our lives because we serve the Lord, but this gives us constant opportunities to show forth the power of Jesus Christ within our dying bodies. 2 Corinthians 4:9-11 (The Living Bible). And the same message that Paul heard from God in the midst of his troubles is for us too: “(God) said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore, I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me” (2 Corinthians 12:9). Thank you, Father, for the “collapsing floors” of my life because I am learning to know that you will never leave nor forsake me.
In the home where we live now--an older home--we have had floors that were very old and worn. Worn and battle scarred. Scarred from lots and lots of families daily walking and scuffing on them, sweeping, scrubbing....
John Wesley was a famous reformer who led spiritual renewal in the 1700s and founded the Methodist movement. As a man of prayer, Wesley interceded/prayed for revival to sweep through England and spread to America. A guide can point out two worn places on the carpet next to Wesley’s bed, where the man knelt for hours in prayer each day, crying out for revival. And, as history tells us, that’s exactly what happened. His prayers were answered. Maybe some of the worn places on our floors were from kneeling in prayer, I don't know. I do know that my aunt who lived in the home before me was a lady of prayer. At any rate, we have had very worn-out floors.
The original floor covering could no longer be called a cover. The wood part that had been painted wasn't painted very good anymore. Most of it had worn off. The floorboards had dried out and left cracks that allowed dirt to sift down into the basement. And allowed us to see when we had left a light on in the basement! The floor was definitely on the sad, need to be replaced list. So, that old floor was covered up and given a new look a year ago . The new floor was fun to sweep and walk on, no places to see a basement light, no splinters in my feet. So nice! But then came trouble. The original floor with its troublesome places had not been dealt with. The new flooring just covered up the sins of the old floor. And as with most sins, if they are not rooted out and done away with, they come back again and again to cause trouble. And trouble is what we have had. The new flooring moved and cracked and broke and caused splinters and was difficult when sweeping. We were not happy floor people anymore. Our pretty new floor wasn't so pretty and had just covered up the sins. Kind of like me, maybe you--We want to cover up and hide what we have done wrong when it would have been better to not have had to cover up the wrong. I would rather have nothing to want to cover up in my life and that is my prayer.
So, we asked to have that the now marred floor be removed with the plan to fix the problems underneath and put a new floor back in place after the problems were fixed. So, plan number 2 was planned out. And discussed and then thought about some more. It wasn't going to be easy to solve the issues that caused the problems. Fixing our sins is never as easy as doing them in the first place, is it? Planning is good but, then you have to apply the plans to fix the problem. You need to call in a master fixer. The master fixer/carpenter saw more problems with the plan and suggested something different. More discussion. More problems were seen. Maybe we should try this, or maybe we should try that!!!! Oh dear!
Finally, something has been decided on that will work--we hope. Plan number 3. We are going to leave it with the master carpenter to do it! All this is going to cost us money that we did not want to spend--extra money than if it had all been done right the first time. Along with all the upset with the floor, we had to remove our wood stove, just in time for the weather to turn cold which gives us a cold home.
We have been living in a disrupted home! Having moved more times that we want to remember, it has begun to feel like we are moving again while not moving. We have had to take most of our furniture and other things out of the room. This room is also my "garden" room during the winter, and I haven't been able to put my summer outdoor plants in place yet. The cold weather made me bring them in and a lot of them are living on the kitchen table and other non-permanent places. My living room has become a storage "shed." We are limited in walking space! I want to complain. But there is no one to complain to but ourselves. There is a Bible verse in Habakkuk that says, "Even though the fig trees have no blossoms, and there are no grapes on the vines; even though the olive crop fails, and the fields lie empty and barren; even though the flocks die in the fields, and the cattle barns are empty, yet I will rejoice in the Lord!" Habakkuk was having major problems!
I invite you to fill in the blanks with me with your own experiences-------------"Even though _________________, and ____________________; even though ____________, and ___________________; even though _____________________, and _________________, yet I will rejoice in the Lord!"
Here is my version--Even though my kitchen is a green house, and I have no floor; even though my living room is a storage shed and my house is cold; even though my knee and hip hurt, and meds don't help much; YET I will rejoice in the Lord! Rejoicing can be so hard sometimes.
What we have re-learned this week is that there are many ways to look at a problem. I have my way, you have your way, and others have even different ways to solve the problem, but the only way to really solve a problem is to let the Master solve it for us. There are different ways and different solutions but, in the end, God's way will be the best way!! I invite you to choose today to let God do the planning of your life. Then you won't fall through the floor or even get a painful sliver and it won't cost you extra money and time.
I wish it had been done right the first time!!!! I long for the day when my life is back in order again. I need the Master Carpenter to come--SOON!