Getting So Much More by Tina Hunt
In August 2004, my family moved to a new town on the other side of the state. We located in a town halfway between the two construction jobs my husband was working. We were somewhat familiar with the town because I had gone to school there a couple decades before.
When we started looking for a house, we had several “must haves” on our list. We were looking for something with at least two bedrooms. My husband is a confirmed basement man, so it needed a basement. I wanted a garage. The list went on and on. The trouble is that landlords are a lot more cautious about whom they rent to, and the fact that we had a bankruptcy on our record blackballed us several times.
Finally, we found a house that filled some of our requirements. I was pretty excited as we looked through it and found a bathroom upstairs that exceeded all my dreams. It was huge. (I’d never had a bathroom that was much bigger than our bathmat.) It had a built-in linen cabinet. But the best part was the old, huge, claw foot tub. I had visions of bubble baths and being able to wash the grandbabies. My dream shattered when the landlord informed us that the tub was non-functional.
We made several trips with our van, loaded with our belongings, prior to moving day. The two-hour drive gave me plenty of time to talk with God about my feelings about the house. I was thankful to have a place to live. But, while this house had at least two bedrooms, there were still several areas where it fell slightly short of our hopes. The kitchen seemed to be as great an afterthought as the downstairs bath. And the bath. Really, God? It seemed such a waste to have that tub sitting up there unused. I tried not to grumble, but I was too tired not to.
We settled in and worked to make the best of our new home. In the spring, the larger building project began. Exactly one month after the job started, the crew was lifting trusses to the roof. Nelson stood on a step ladder guiding them up. As they were lifting, the last truss kicked out, and Nelson was knocked off the ladder. He landed squarely on his left foot and did a spin motion that totally demolished his ankle. The doctor said his ankle looked just like Humpty Dumpty.
We had to get a hospital bed, because our bedroom was on the second floor. For the next eighteen months, Nelson slept downstairs. He wasn’t able to put any weight on the ankle for a long time. That meant all hygiene and toileting happened in that bed. After many months, he graduated to a bedside commode. It was a happy day at our house when he could finally hobble to the little bathroom with his walker and use the toilet all by himself.
That tiny little bathroom afforded us one other thing that we hadn’t considered up to that point. If it hadn’t been for that tiny, old, basement-like shower stall, my husband wouldn’t have been able to take a shower. It was perfectly arranged so that he could get in there with his walker. It was small enough that he could lean on the walls for support. To use the words of the Little Bear in Goldilocks, “It was just right!”
When we made our list of what we wanted in a house, we had no idea that we were going to need a handicap-accessible shower stall. But God did. Isn’t it just like Him to give us more than what we ask for and exactly what we need? Paul reinforces this idea in his letter to the Ephesians when he prays that the power of God, which is able to do so much more than we could even ask or imagine, would work mightily in the Ephesian believers (see Ephesians 3:20). Perhaps it’s also what the prophet Jeremiah was thinking when he penned: “Call to me and I will answer you, and will tell you great and hidden things that you have not known (Jeremiah 33:3, NRSV).”
I try not to grumble these days. When I ask God for one thing and I get something different, I try to remember that He has the big picture in view and I will have what I need when I need it. He loves me that much. I’m convinced He loves you that much too.
Photo Courtesy of Microsoft.com
Tina Hunt was a pastor, hospital/institutional chaplain, and family counselor for over 20 years. She continues to spend her days caring for others. She provides daily care for an elderly woman with Alzheimer’s and in the evenings takes care of her six year old grandson. Tina loves to teach and lead Bible studies. She enjoys singing at church, in the choir, and duets with her husband of thirty-three years. Tina has been writing most of her life in career-related ways. She has recently transitioned into making writing her career. Tina finds her inspiration in the common things of life, taking her lead from Jesus. You can find her blogging at Pot Of Manna . Follow her on Twitter: @TinaMHunt