is home where the heart is?

As the day of our house move grows nearer, we find ourselves in an awkward position – we’ve got no place to go to.

We have set ourselves the date of August 15th as moving day for going to Grimsby.  We chose that day because it is the only date that we can fit the move into – everything else between then and now, and the time subsequent to that date are full up with activity: overseas trips, conferences, visits, etc.

But August 15th really isnt far away any more, and yet we’re apparently no closer to finding a new home.  To be honest I find this hard, I have really been trusting that God would provide an answer to the problem, and I still am trusting.  But all I see around me is options being stripped away, which is kind of disheartening.

On top of that, well meaning friends encourage us with words like ‘oh, do you really have to go?’ or ‘we’d love you to stay here’, which are very touching, but not terribly helpful when we are trying to push through into the new stuff.

We have a basic conundrum which is that we dont have enough income to support a commercial rent, but we cant get housing from the local housing association either, cos we’re not high enough priority candidates – which I can understand.

The thing is that I dont want to have money, we manage on very little income, which is good in my book, but suddenly it poses me with a problem.  There seem to be no alternative options for those who want to live another way.  We may be forced into spending some time with family members, which would be fine, except for the fact that we have a house full of stuff, and there are four of us…

My heart is to follow Jesus, the nomadic prophet, the penniless rabbi, the homeless God-man, yet for me to be homeless means for my children to be homeless too, and that’s awkward, especially seeing as they want a new school to go to!

So we need a new home, somewhere we can live our way, which means simply, hospitably, happily.

If you have a spare moment, please remember this in a prayer.

Oh yeah, and hello – sorry I havent posted for an age, been having a blogging holiday, and had parents to stay, my brother got married, Kel and I went to a gig, cool stuff like that – so I havent bothered posting – hope you havent missed me.

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3 thoughts on “is home where the heart is?

  1. I’m not entirely sure that Jesus would have chosen to homeless and penniless if he’d had a family to look after.

    Actually, I don’t think he was penniless anyway, I get the impression that him and his gang actually had quite a significant amount of communal money.

  2. On the other hand, Jesus was a pretty radical sort of a person, on a scale of one to ten, he would rate around 20 😉

    You might get the impression that they had plenty of dosh, but I wouldnt agree. They had no money to pay the temple tax, so got some from a fish. Rabbis werent paid money at that time anyhow, so what would the source of their income have been? He clearly had nowhere to live, and when he was crucified the soldiers only had his clothing to divide up between them. His disciples picked wild food to eat, etc etc. The treasurer when he deserted didnt have any money over the spoils of his betrayal…

    I think there is something special about poverty, which doesnt mean that we should keep people in poverty, but it should be nited that when Wesley lead lots of people to Christ, he found that as soon as they settled down, worked hard and grew propsperous, they abandoned their faith! There is a middle ground, that we each have what we need to get by, although that is still a moot point, as what you or I think is enough, is nto what others think of as enough. Our family income is around £12,000 pa, which is enough for us at the moment, but it wont be when our rent goes up… on the other hand some say they cant live on anything less that 20K+, and they probably cant depending upon their way of life. Others live on 2 or 3 USD per day, so who’s to say what enough is?

    Jesus said blessed are the poor, which meant those who have to rely totally on God, and as soon as we are well enough off to make our lives easy enough to do without God in the little things, we are on a downward slope, and it takes a strong person to stay of their backside – stronger than me anyway 🙂

  3. They absolutely had the money to pay the temple tax. Peter had no hesitation in answering “Yes he does” to the people who asked if Jesus paid the temple tax. The fish thing is a gigantic joke by Jesus who wants to avoid making his disciple look a fool while at the same time claiming exemption from the tax.

    He did have somewhere to live – with his family, who at one point came to take him home, but chose not to, instead staying with his friends and disciples around the country, many of whom were wealthy. In fact, I don’t believe that he forced his mother into poverty because of his mission, I think part of why he probably started his mission so relatively late is because before that he was assuring her and his own financial independence (since Joseph seemed to be no longer in the picture). I can’t believe that the same guy who preached against the teachers of the laws use of Corban to avoid providing for their parents would neglect his own duties to his family and younger siblings.

    Of course the soldiers only had his clothes to divide up – none of his property was in Jerusalem, and when they arrested him, they took only him, leaving his camp full of disciples and the communal belongings behind.

    His disciples picked wild food to eat as they were walking through a field, as anyone would. They also had no problem going into town to buy food while he met the woman at the well, or renting an upper room. Even after he died, they were able to remain in the city, eat, living without having to revert back to their old jobs.

    Luke 9:14 ” They answered, “We have only five loaves of bread and two fish—unless we go and buy food for all this crowd.” 14(About five thousand men were there.)

    That may have been sarcasm, but strongly suggests to me that they had at least eight months wages in the kitty (which Philip tells us wouldn’t quite be enough).

    As a Rabbi, he would have been responsible for his disciples, I don’t think he would have taken that responsibility on if he didn’t know he could look after them.

    I’m not sure why you think Judas only took the 30 pieces of silver with him on desertion. In fact, according to Matthew, he tried to return the money when he realised what he’d done. It wouldn’t have made sense to try to return the 30 pieces plus the contents of the kitty. I suspect that he didn’t expect them to actually execute Jesus, otherwise he wouldn’t have been so remorseful, and that he almost certainly left the kitty with the other disciples when he went to commit suicide.

    Women were prepared to give their entire dowry to Jesus in costly shows of affection. Tax collectors and very wealthy men left their professions to do whatever he said. He was invited to parties all over the place. I think there would have been many gifts to his kitty – to the extent that it would be worthy stealing from, and thinking that there was enough there that you’d get away with it too.

    I can only find one verse in the bible where Jesus says “Blessed are the poor”, and I think the comparison between Luke 6:20 and Matthew 5:3 raises doubts about whether he was meaning that financially or not.

    Personally I don’t think that God wants to spend his time providing for people to whom he has given the intelligence and strength to provide both for themselves and to fulfil their obligation to provide for others.

    Rather, I prefer the example of Paul, who when it was necessary (and sometimes even when he could have claimed support didn’t) worked hard for his living so as not to be a burden to those he was ministering to.

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