We were moving from Texas to Alaska and our house had to sell. An exciting time but also scary. Other people we knew had houses in their former cities of employment that they were having to maintain because they hadn’t sold. So we got the house beautifully clean and delightful to look at. After all, that was not difficult, because this was such a fantastic house that I made calls to find the builder and already had a copy of the house plans in case we would want to build it someplace else. So as the weeks went by we kept our hopes up and waited.
The time came when there indeed was a buyer. We were ready for the inspection phase. What follows is like a nightmare. He came and placed red dots on almost all of the small panes of the lovely windows declaring that they were leaking. They were not cloudy like one would expect leaking windows to be. He immediately shut down the furnace because of possible danger! There were pages of problems around the house that he listed. We were incredulous. Now it was up to us to disprove these things or take the consequences, drastic reduction in price, if we were to keep the sale viable. How would we ever be able to do this?
A Hymn to Help
There were sleepless nights for me. One night I got up quietly so as not to disturb my husband and went out to sleep on the couch so my tossing and turning wouldn’t wake him. As I lay there, I realized that a song was playing in the background of my mind and I didn’t pay much attention…the tune just going over and over. Maybe I should bring the words of this song into focus, was my thought. Could there be something there to help me feel better? It was that old hymn “I’m a Child of the King.” I remembered it well. My heart leaped a bit when in my thoughts I say the first phrase.
My Father is rich in houses and lands, He holdeth the wealth of the world in His hands! Of rubies and diamonds, of silver and gold, His coffers are full, He has riches untold!
I’m a child of the King, a child of the King. With Jesus, my Savior, I’m a child of the King.
I could feel the tension in my body relax as I was reminded that I’m not in this alone. My own Father above is more than adequate to handle where I will live and the finances connected with it. I was so excited by this direct encouragement that I bounded off the couch and ran to my hymnal collection to look up the words of the other hymn verses to see if there is even more encouragement there. Sure enough. Excitedly I read,
A tent or a cottage, why should I care? He’s building a palace for me over there. An exile from home, but still I can sing, Oh Glory to God, I’m a child of the King.
My relief was palpable. Yes, Jesus was telling me now that I must not worry, that I will be okay. A more humble abode than this one would be fine as the phrase a tent or a cottage explains. We have health, we have family, and so many other blessings. Yes, I will be an exile from home in that I am going to a place where I am a stranger, but the promise is that still I can sing and things will work out for us. Blessed sleep follows.
Summers are hot in Texas and I needed to solve the furnace problem so we could use the air conditioner. So I went to our file drawer and began to hunt for the furnace maintenance receipts. After a tedious search, I found a fairly recent receipt that showed a furnace maintenance. Before my unbelieving eyes, our furnace man had uncharacteristically left a handwritten not on the receipt, Furnace is fine!
We slugged our way through all the other “problems” with our house through the weeks ahead. The new buyers finally spoke to us with some kind of conciliatory statement to the effect that it was somewhat embarrassing for them the way that inspector behaved. We came out the other side of this trial breathing easier and with a clear vision for our next assignment in Alaska, thanks to our Lord, who is ever faithful in the crisis times.
Elaine is the founder of hymnserve.com. Her website provides downloadable hymn accompaniment for congregations, small groups and individuals.