I’m BUSTING at the seams to introduce you to my very 1st guest post on FaithColoredGlasses.com. She’s Friday’s Faith-Filled Friend, my dear friend, Mari Thelander, aka Mari LaVell. I’ll say no more, except Mari is one viewing life’s circumstances by faith, not by sight. See for yourself.
By Faith — Marita Thelander
In 1991, we packed up everything we owned, said good-bye to our parents, our hometown, and our home church and moved to a tiny town in Southern Idaho called Kuna. It’s pronounced Q-na and is an Indian word that means end of the road.
As far as I’m concerned, it meant end of the earth. I called my mom, crying. I told her it’s brown, flat and ugly and we’re so far from home we’re in a different time zone.
As the new pastors of a struggling congregation of thirteen (that was considering closing its doors permanently), we pulled into the little desert town and began to search for someplace to live. No one greeted us, no one had anything lined up for us to check out, and no one even thought to help us find anything.
Can you believe we left home without even knowing where we would unload our stuff? We had three days before the truck needed to be turned in. Our promised salary from the little storefront church (for reals) was rent under $500 a month.
We knew outside jobs were needed, but one has to have a place to live before one can find a job, yet one needs to have a job to have income to get someone to rent to you. This was faith in action, let me tell you.
On the third day we were begging a rental agency to have faith in us as we had faith in God. The agency called a home owner with a house that fit our need and budget. He agreed to let us move in knowing that rent was our only salary, which guaranteed he’d get paid every month. He let us skip the last month rent and deposit and we began to unload our truck.
We had no money, no oil for the furnace, no food, no jobs…but God met every one of those needs and more in miraculous ways too detailed for me to go into at this time.
Eventually we purchased land, put a double-wide parsonage on it, and prepared to build our own facility. The little congregation of thirteen grew to over fifty before we left.
We look back on it now and think we were young and naïve, or full of faith.
Today, twenty years later, the church in Kuna is thriving in a large new facility and growing because a young couple had faith that they were to keep the church doors open for the potential God showed them Kuna had to offer.
Hebrews 11:8 “By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out
to the place which he would receive as an inheritance.
And he went out, not knowing where he was going.”
Today, twenty years later, we face an Abraham moment again. We’ve been pastors at a small church with some very difficult situations, and it is abundantly clear that we will soon pack up and move on. We don’t know exactly where or when, but we know God is in control.
Isaiah 26:3 [God] will keep [me] in perfect peace, [my] mind is stayed on [Him]:
because [I] trust in [Him].
[POV is changed for better understanding]
By faith…we go.
Mari lives life wrapped in her husband’s arms with a latte in one hand, chocolate in the other, and a frequent twinge of a mischievous smile. Married for 29 years to her pastor, she has three adult children that miraculously survived growing up in the fishbowl called…the parsonage. Blessed with five adorable grandchildren, she absolutely adores the title of Gwamma, Mampa, or whatever else they morph it into.
Mari dabbles in blog designs, assisting others to find their inner-blogginess. She will snag every opportunity to sing or speak publicly using humor transparency and practical encouragement. You can find her at her blog: Traipsing Along With A Mari Heart.
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