If you read nothing else today on ActiveRain, please take the time to read this beautiful story! You will be so glad that you did!!
In despair, I almost let the phone roll to voicemailOwners of three of my listings phoned me one day after I had a heart attack in late June. The first two asked how I was doing and then quickly segued into how my health might affect the marketing of their houses. I assured them both that I had only been in the hospital overnight and had returned to work the day after I was dismissed. Even if that had not been the case, I explained, I am not the only agent in my family-owned agency. Both my husband and daughter are fully capable of handling the business in my absence as they did last October following my quadruple bypass surgery.In spite of my recent incident, the newspaper ad ran as scheduled, the open houses took place as scheduled, the phone was answered, showings were coordinated, details were handled. Contracts on their way to closing continued through the process. Both callers were somewhat reassured, though I could sense the lingering doubts they both harbored.When caller ID popped up a third owner's name that day, all I could think was, "Oh, no! Not again." I almost let it roll to voicemail.Maybe I'd made a mistake in being so open about my open heart surgery. Maybe trying to warn others about uncommon symptoms and 10 years' worth of missed diagnoses was going to kill my business. Maybe I should limit my women's heart health crusade to merely visiting patients in the hospital. Maybe I should not speak out about what I've learned. Maybe being so open about my experience was a mistake. Maybe I should have covered up everything.It's been a really tough few weeks. Not only did the heart attack deal me an emotional blow, but my Mom has been steadily spiraling down. Our family has been forced to deal with decisions about "palliative" care--that's the new buzzword for Hospice. Just a week after my own hospitalization, I was sitting up all night in ER with Mom and, yet again, facing mortality.As I answered the third phone call, my mind was awhirl and my spirit was sinking. I have tears in my eyes as I remember it. "Liz, honey, you've been in our thoughts and prayers," the client said."Oh, thank you. I appreciate that," I said, dread engulfing me as I waited for the proverbial shoe to drop."We don't want to add to your stress," Marilyn continued, and my mind spun into high gear...you're going to withdraw your listing to lessen my stress... I didn't think I had a third round left in me."Don't give our house another thought. No open houses, no extra work. God's in control, and it will sell no matter what you do or don't do, if it is His will. So don't worry about us. Take care of yourself," Marilyn said, reassuringly. I took a deep, cleansing breath.Guess which one of the three houses is now under contract? Marilyn's, of course. God used her to remind me of what I already knew. God is in control.This week when I took the Inspection Notice to Marilyn, she had typed a full page letter of affirmation for me, using her own thoughts and citing Scripture. She reminded me that I am "fearfully and wonderfully made" (Psalm 139:13-18). And she also reiterated the lesson about ultimate control, "My sheep hear my voice, and I know them...And I give them eternal life...neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand..." (John 10:27-29)On the back of the page, she had added thanks in her own handwriting. "You are a special person and God has given me a love for you and your daughter. I really appreciate your hard and honorable labors in making this transition of homes for us...you have made the load lighter."
Maybe I needed the first two phone calls to prepare me properly for the third one. When things seem bad, just wait. God is getting ready to take control. My recent heart attack, due to the failure of one of my grafts, was mild; and it did minimal damage. We already know that my heart has the ability to create collateral circulation. I believe that is happening right now.
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