Kitchen Diaries Part 2: Stuck & No Going Back
We were about four days into the destruction of the kitchen. It looked like this:
There was no going back!
Then we got some (not totally unexpected, because this is Peru so we are used to it) news that the budget was not going to work. The wood we had taken out of the kitchen which we planned to re-use was not in good enough condition to be re-used and the worktops we had budgeted for were not going to happen with the current design.
There was no going back and I began to wonder - had it all been a huge mistake? Where was the extra money going to come from? Was this even God’s idea in the first place or was it just a fanciful idea that I had?
Mark and I prayed about it. I was struggling with investing money into a kitchen when so many around us have so little, but I also didn’t want to waste the money we were investing in it by doing something that wasn’t going to last. We try to live simply, but not in poverty.
We looked again at our definition of simplicity :
Only investing in things that have kingdom value.
Then we looked again at the vision for the kitchen:
To create a functional, practical space useable by many at the same time that is going to last, a space which will inspire and facilitate strong relationships.
The vision fitted with our definition of simplicity, but it still felt very uncomfortable to me.
I asked God why he had allowed us to start if it was going to cost so much more - he said we wouldn’t have gone on the faith journey if we had known the true cost. And that is almost definitely true. Now we had to trust Him!
Around the same time, Mark listened to a sermon where Heidi Baker was talking about the hearing something so clearly from God and then Monday morning coming round and we start to question if we actually heard God. Whether it was just us. Her advice: stick to what God said in that moment of intimacy with Him.
And so God challenged my poverty spirit and asked me why He wasn’t able to bless us with a new kitchen that would be a place to bless others? It didn’t matter how much it cost - if our hearts were in the right place, and the investment was in His kingdom - He would work it out. It is all His anyway. And He reminded me of heaven and how much care and expense went into creating the earthly replica of His heavenly temple - it never being about the money nor the materials in themselves, but rather the making room for Him.
And I want my kitchen to be a holy place - a place where heaven does meet earth. In many ways our kitchen is one of the centers of our community and family- it is where many conversations happen, where many learn to embrace a servant heart (we have no dish washer to fill after our daily meals for 8-14!). It is where late at night a cup of tea is embraced and a heart is shared and many a tear flows. It is where I sing praises out loud or make Mark dance with me after a bite of chocolate sends me a bit loopy. It is where we throw together a snack with the kids, or make cookies, or do homeschool, or read, or fill too many pans for pasta and hamburgers for 40 on a Sunday. It is where Mark and I sit on a rare moment when it is just the two of us alone and think big thoughts, pray or just share the stories of the day.
I just needed to go back to the vision and the see God’s heart in this project so I could believe - trust - have faith, that HE was the one who started this project, and HE will be the one to see it through.
And I began asking the Spirit what we could do to cut costs whilst keeping the design and quality and at 3am the Spirit and I began drawing out a complete redesign of the kitchen which is so much better than the original layout and will save money on the counter tops whilst not losing counter space and create a dining area too. (You'll have to wait for a later post to see how it all turns out - we're still in the middle of the work!)
And maybe, just maybe, a little bit of excitement began to rise up in me again at the thought of it finally being done and the miracles God would have to do to get there!
But now I know, with certainty, that God is in this and He will see it through to the end.
Is there a dream God has given you that looks like totally destruction at the moment?!
What vision has God given you that you need to go back and be reminded of?
Where do you need faith to believe Him again?