The bill came yesterday. The one we all dread. The yearly home tax bill. I do not understand how our local tax system works. It seems they tell you one thing and then do another.
We've been in this house a little over a year. We found a beautiful location in a new sub-division. Our builder gave us a great deal on a gorgeous house, and last year's tax bill was very reasonable. However, this year, the proposed bill was slightly higher than last year — about $3000 higher. There have been several new additions to our subdivision, and although we received a bargain price for our dream home, I don't think our neighbors got the same deal. Apparently, taxes are configured on the average price of houses in an area. We didn't pay the high price our neighbors paid for their houses. but we were definitely expected to pay the same taxes. Back in the spring, when we were first made aware of the situation, I contested it. It took a awhile to prove that we paid a small price for our large house, but in the end, he agreed to keep our taxes low one more year. I went home happy and prepared for October.
Imagine my surprise and my horror when the bill arrived yesterday. The bill was $1300 higher than the year before. At least it wasn't $3000 higher, but still, I was beginning to think I would have to start digging up an extra $1300. I prepared myself as I logged online to view my home escrow balance. What I saw was amazing! I wanted to sing! I wanted to shout! “Yay God!”
My escrow account stood at $40 above what we needed this year! God provided. It was there. I had been putting a little extra in ever since the spring and I had expected to have enough for the small bill we thought we were getting, and be a little ahead for the big bill I anticipated next year. However, God knew what was coming. It was just wonderful!
“And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:19 (NIV)
I spent the next few hours thanking God and reviewing recent events in my life. What did I find? More thanksgiving. It dawned on me, everything is getting better. It's not just this. God didn't just meet my financial needs. In the past few weeks, my health has improved. I am mentally and physically healthier than I've been in over a year. Within our family, things have calmed down. There is less stress. We are more organized and productive. We're beginning to enjoy life again. God is with us. He loves us and He is meeting our needs.
I feel like King David coming out of a long and deep depression. It's easy to see how he must have felt after such intense periods of trial and tribulation. David was just pure “giddy with excitement,” when he realized God was with him and had delivered him.
“Let us come before him with thanksgiving and extol him with music and song.” Psalm 95:2 (NIV)
“Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name.” Psalm 100:4 (NIV)
“Sing to the LORD with thanksgiving; make music to our God on the harp.” Psalm 147:7
Yes, it is easy to see why I am so happy and give thanksgiving to God for meeting my needs. Yet, I will not forget, if it wasn't for the trials and the tribulations in the first place, I might not be so grateful now. It's easy to cruise through life when all is going well. In fact, most of us tend to forget God is even there when things are good. However, as soon as things get bad, we, as humans, tend to do one of two things. Either we cry out to God to save us or we cry out asking God why he has left us? During this past year, I did both. I have gone through some dark times of wondering, ” Is God even real?” Over time, I came back to my senses of knowing He is here and He loves me, but as much as I wanted rescuing, I knew I had to wait on Him.
“He guides the humble in what is right and teaches them his way.”Psalm 25:9 (NIV)
“Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance.” (NIV) James 1:2-3
Thank you Lord for providing both times of joy and times of trial, so that through it all, I can know you more.
“For this reason I kneel before the Father, from whom his whole family in heaven and on earth derives its name. I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ,and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.
Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.” Ephesians 3:14-21 (NIV)
To God be the Glory .