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Friday, 4 April 2014
Ten Years of Provision, Part 1 (House and Job)
Three weeks prior to moving, we had no housing lined up. The day we moved we had no job prospects either. What in the world were we thinking?
We knew God had called my husband to a change in direction. No longer would he work in the family business he had always known nor live in the house he had been brought to as a newborn. It was a time to step out in faith and see where God would lead us. To make a transition into more of a helping profession would require education, so my husband enrolled at a Bible college that offered a one-year certificate program (part-time, it would take two years in all). He started to complete some prerequisites by correspondence so that in September he could begin the program. The plan was to find part-time employment and cash in some of our retirement savings to supplement this meagre income. Since our youngest child was just over a year old, I would continue to be a stay-at-home mom and earn a little child care income.
Finding housing was a story in itself. We had made contact with a cooperative housing project in the early winter and arranged to take a unit they would have available April 1st. However, in the middle of March the superintendent called and informed us that the tenant whose unit we were to get was fighting the eviction notice and everything would be delayed. This did not give us much time to spare. The next available opportunity, when my husband had to take a work shipment into Toronto in the wee hours of the morning, he continued west to the city we would move to. He called a property management company from the yellow pages (its name was Provident) and asked if he could see some rental units that were available. The agent would be doing a tour with another potential client and invited him to join along. They looked through several three bedroom semi-detached houses that all had a similar layout. The rent would be just under $1000 per month, but all the units available for viewing were set for a May 1st move-in. "Well," the agent said, "there is one unit set for April 1st, but we can't look at it. We did not give the current occupants 24 hours notice." My husband told her he would take it, sight unseen.
The next thing this company wanted to know was employment information. There was none to give. Next, proof of savings. Most of our savings was not in a traditional bank, so it took some extra time to verify that it was all legitimate. On March 17, we received a call from our new landlords that everything was in order. One more glitch they were concerned about was that it would not be repainted in time for an April 1st move-in. That was fine, because our plan was to move on the 6th anyways.
Within two weeks of moving, my husband found a job at minimum wage (then $7.00 per hour) at a retail store. Those first two years we always had enough to pay our bills. Thus began journey that was humbling and faith-strengthening at the same time.
Making Ends Meet