Hard to put the tough times out there on display for others to see and form opinions about.
But I'm going to share with you in spite of my fear of vulnerability....
School starts back up on Monday and I should be posting about upcoming art class time slots, lessons and workshops and sharing pictures of all the paintings I've been working on, but I can't do those things.
I can't because our contractor ripped my dream studio to shreds and created a nightmare in its place.
The incomplete structure currently sits with construction debris all around. It is an unsafe shell of what was meant to be. Propped up on the inside with long planks of wood because the header beam is not structurally sound. I feel a knot in my stomach just looking at it. Sitting there. Payments on the loan I took out loom over my head. What do I do?
We trusted him.
We were excited about all the construction plans. It all sounded like things were going to be great.
We paid him in full because he pleaded with us to do so, saying he desperately needed the cash flow to get things back on track for his company. He sat in our home at our dining room table as we handed him the last payment check and told us and our family that our job was his number one priority. We believed it. He made grand gestures but left us only broken promises, lies, heartache, and a huge financial burden.
We've been through the whole gamut of emotions: anger, frustration, pity, compassion, sadness, despair, hope, disappointment and and uneasy numbness.
All summer long we tried to believe the excuses and hope for the best.
We were patient.
But things have only gotten worse.
Is everything ruined beyond repair?
To this I am going to say, "No".
No, I believe there will be a light at the end of this stressful, dimly lit, poorly constructed tunnel.
We are going to press on.
I don't want to feel depressed and stressed out over it any more.
And I won't hide it as if it was a failure of my own making, my own stupidity.
I can't think that way; so I fight against those thoughts.
Bad things happen.
Sometimes we trust in the wrong people.
I will not let the weight of it hold me down.
When I told my husband that I had started job hunting on the internet, do you know what he did. He told me to stop. He said this Art Studio was my dream and we are not going to let it go down like this! Gosh I love that guy. How he lifts my heart and pushes me forward! I am so thankful.
His parents and my mom and sister have also been a steady and constant source of support in the long drawn out day to day of it. And the way they have come alongside us and lifted the burden by being sounding boards and prayer support has meant so much. They've helped us reach out to obtain good legal council and advice on our options.
Then recently I opened up and shared with some close friends at church. Oh my heart for these ladies. I loved the fact that they did not get on a "contractor bashing binge" or lead me down the path of negativity which would be so easy to do. Instead, they gave me encouragement and hope, and they lifted the situation in prayer. They reminded me that in life, when we are pursuing a passion that has been laid on our heart, and we encounter obstacles and great difficulties, it does not mean that we should give up. It instead is an opportunity to pray forward and see how our God moves. Not that the "bad guy" will always do a complete turn around and do what's right, or we will get back all that was lost. My God is not a genie in a bottle. He is bigger than that and His ways are always better than what we would try to tell Him to do. Sometimes the answer is wrapped up in a change in our own perspective. Seeing the bigger picture and knowing that somehow, it's all going to be alright. We have just this one finite life, with so little we really control so why not loosen the grip a little and watch what happens when we let our Savior take over.
Please, dear friends I ask you that if you are a like minded believer would you lift this in prayer. Pray for wisdom and direction in our words and actions. Pray for our contractor and others he has worked with that are also facing difficulties right now. And then give praise to the Lord for He is good. He is good when our life is going great and He is good when we feel like all is falling apart. He is unchanging and ever worthy of praise.
I will open this Art Studio. I believe it will happen.
And the celebration will be BIG!