Monday, August 28, 2006

THE HOUSE OF ELEVEN WINDOWS

“The House of Eleven Windows” by Keith Giles

A few months ago, long before anyone really knew that Wendy and I were planning to leave our staff positions at a local church and start a crazy house church, we were guests in the home of an elderly couple who had once been missionaries themselves in Mexico many years ago.

The wife’s name was Ethel. She was someone who had a reputation for having a prophetic gift. Meaning that, rather tell the future, she would often have words of encouragement for people that referred to a specific situation or event. This evening we were having dinner in their home because she had informed us that she had something important to share with us.

After dinner she began to tell us about something that had happened months earlier during the Sunday morning service when Wendy and I had come and sat down in front of her and her husband during worship. She began to tell us how, during the worship, she kept seeing a large, three-story house with eleven windows all over it. She kept seeing it in her mind every time she closed her eyes and so she started to pray and ask God what this picture meant. God spoke to her heart and said that it was because Wendy and I were going to be leaving and that we were going to start a house church.

Sitting there at her dinner table, Wendy and I slowly turned to look at each other in amazement. No one at our church was aware that we were leaving to start a house church at this point in time. This was quite an on-target word of encouragement to us.

She wasn’t finished. She said that she then asked God why there were eleven windows on the house. God spoke to her heart again, as we were standing in front of her worshipping, that the eleven windows stood for eleven windows of opportunity that He was about to open up for us in this new ministry.

At the time, Wendy and I didn’t know where we would end up living. The news had come only weeks earlier from our landlord that the house we’d been renting for over 3 years would be up for sale and that we had to move out. This word encouraged us because it meant that we’d have a house church where God would bless us in many ways.

Soon enough we moved out of our old house, stored our belongings in a storage unit, and began searching for a new house. In a few weeks we moved into our new house in Orange, a few miles away from our old house. After a few more months we began our first house church meetings and called it “The Mission”.

It was only a few months ago that we started a “Kids Club” in our new home for the kids in our neighborhood, sharing the Gospel with these four elementary-age children as part of our calling to be missionaries in our culture.

One night, I couldn’t sleep and I got up to pray. It was about three o’clock in the morning. I went into the den where we normally host our house church gatherings and have since started our “Kids Club” services. As I prayed, God revealed something very practical to me. I began to pray about that word He gave us through Ethel months earlier, about the eleven windows of opportunity. I prayed and asked God to show me more about what this really meant. Then I realized something amazing. I started to mentally count how many windows there were in this new house we were now living in. There were eleven windows here. I mentally did the count in my head again, adding up the windows in each room one more time to be sure. Again, the number was the same. Eleven windows.

The simplicity of this realization washed over me like a flood of emotion. I sat on my couch, in the dark and began to shake my head in wonder and disbelief. All those months ago, long before anyone knew we were even thinking of starting a house church, long before we ourselves even knew where we’d end up living next, long before we’d ever started to walk out our calling to be missionaries in our city, God had this house in mind. God held this place for us. He intended for us specifically to be in this neighborhood, to minister to these children, to lead the house church in this very place. He even counted the windows and told us about it months in advance so that we’d know we were in the right place at the right time.

Today I am searching for a new full-time job. I have no idea where we’ll get the funds to cover rent and groceries in the next few weeks. I have done all I know how to do in order to find a new job, any job, that could cover our bills and provide our needs. As I sit here writing this, in the house with eleven windows, I do not know what God is about to do next. I do not know how God will provide. But I do know that God has us in the right place. I do know that God has seen the end from the beginning and I know that He will carry us in His arms, as He always has before.

Just this morning, I got up to pray again. I went into the den and knelt in front of the same sofa to pray. I again remembered the word about the eleven windows. Then I started to count the doors in our house, just out of curiosity.

Can you guess how many doors there are in this house?

God is faithful and He speaks to us and reveals His faithfulness to us in mysterious ways.

Conversatio Morem!

kg

1 comment:

Darren Briggs said...

Why is it that God wakes some people up at 3:00 in the morning? I have often wondered if it is only to get our full attention. Thanks for telling this faith story.