As the economy of the USA begins to recover from the Coved-19 nightmare, numbers of people are moving to find jobs or to downsize and find a bit more freedom! The story in this blog was written a few years ago and a longer version included in the book, “You Are and Overcomer,” on sale in the Store page of this website. The purpose and details of the story may help you if the title of this blog caught your attention!
A RADICAL TYPE OF DOWN-SIZING!
What would you do if God told you to sell everything and follow Him?[i]
It was 4 o’clock in the morning on a cloudy, cool September Sunday in the Northwest USA. The birds were not even chirping yet and it was dark outside as I awoke. As I stumbled down the hallway from the bedroom to the bathroom, I tried to walk quietly and not wake up my wife. Suddenly, I heard a voice in my head saying, “Sell Everything and Follow Me, SELL EVERYTHING and follow me, sell everything and FOLLOW ME” (repeated nearly 25 times). I later learned that if you hear a message from the Lord that is repeated over and over, you will face huge opposition if you choose to obey! My first reaction was amazement because this type of message had never happened before. In previous years, I had received mostly patient and calm messages that I recorded in my spiritual journal. This one was URGENT and more vocal!
VERIFICATION OF THE MESSAGE
Later in the morning, I told my wife about the message and she was amazed to find the same message in our daily devotional for that season—a book by Joyce Meyers called “100 Ways to Simplify Your Life.” The message was related to “simplifying” our life! And, that devotional also referenced the story of the “rich young ruler” in Matthew 19:16-30, so we knew it was biblical. In fact, the message is even repeated in the gospels (Matthew 19, Mark 10, Luke 18), just like the vocal message I received.
Another verification of the message came when we went to church that morning. On the way to church, in the car, I said, “What if this message of selling everything is mentioned in church today?” It WAS! A guest speaker appeared at church and used the “rich young ruler” passage of scripture to urge us to give more of ourselves to Christ and spread the gospel. We were amazed again and thanked the speaker after the service. And, then we realized—we are not even rich, young, or rulers! But, by world standards, most Americans are rich in comparison to millions of people in undeveloped countries. All these messages matched another message we had heard earlier that year. Banning Leibscher of Jesus Culture in Sacramento, California, had given a message that said, “God wants 100% of you, not just a tithe of 10%!” That message had rocked us previously, and now we had the ultimate one—“Sell all…”
What would you do? Where would you start? Isn’t it difficult in our modern society to sell everything?
As I write this story years after this message was received, we have gone from single-wide mobile homes to small houses—quite different from 1.3 acres with two houses (one smaller guest house)! Also, we sold or donated many of the tools, riding lawnmowers, and resources needed to maintain a “country home.” Did we meet the resistance to “sell everything” that the repetition of the message suggested? Yes, and Amen! The first major resistance came from our own family who did NOT want us to move from that beautiful country setting! The next series of challenges involved trying to sell large items (e.g., an antique stove and furniture). It took a lot of time and effort to advertise, show, and sell many of the items. The biggest challenge came when we sold our home/acreage. The appraiser (randomly chosen by law in Washington State), chose to value our house many thousands of dollars below our listing price. And the appraisal was below what the new buyer had offered! We found out that it was illegal for the buyer to pay more than the appraisal in cash outside of the formal sale, so we were “stuck.” We took the loss as part of the “sell everything” guideline because we felt led to move on.
BLESSINGS ARE COMING
Even though the challenges to “selling all” were great, the blessings in the following two years were AMAZING! After finishing my last “office job” (working at a college), we moved to another town where our spiritual growth sped up through all the teaching, training, and fellowship at a powerful church. We moved into a small 2-bedroom house, renovated it, and later sold it at a surprising profit when we moved. God provided a profit, we believe, because we had lost so much on the sale of our previous home/acreage! (We found Bible verses that prophesied “double bonus” paybacks for injustice this case).
Other huge blessings that occurred in the two-year period included becoming an ordained pastor, assisting the pastor of a church, and finally starting our own ministry based on a home-group concept. And now we are blessed mightily by the public reaction to iworship423.
Thank you for listening to our station and our blogs. We are blessed by your attention!
Pastor G. Harold Roid
P.S. To be totally transparent as a Pastor, I must tell you what happened in the years that followed this “sell everything” message. To raise funds for our ministry, we launched into a season of “flipping homes,” in a six-year stretch. The homes were largely mobile homes in senior 55+ parks so life was still simple and low cost. Although we made profits on most homes, the blessing was that we had opportunities to bless and impact seniors in these retirement parks. We helped them with repairs, moving some to assisted living, and counseling grieved daughters of residents that had died. We sometimes sold the mobile home and much of the furniture and even pictures on the wall! There is power in being able to let go of “things” in this life!
However, to be honest, we were not always perfect in selling everything. We got a reminder to “sell all” in the middle of this season. Even though we have not been “perfect,” God has assured us that God knows our hearts—as He will understand your heart if you
[i] See Jesus’ message to the young ruler at Mark 10:21.