This morning I was cleaning my window frames. As I was doing this laborious task . . . I was thinking and reflecting on the past 12 months since I moved in to this apartment. At the time of looking for a new place to call home, I was actually on my way to look at a different apartment when I saw the billboard for this one, and so made an enquiry.
It looked very flash from the outside, and it was 2 bedrooms, bigger and better than the one bedroom apartments I’d been looking for, and for the same price. I thought it was a sign! There were two available No 3 and No 5. So I checked them both out.
I really liked Number 5 . . . but Number 3 was okay too. But I would REALLY like Number 5. And so I prayed . . . and prayed . . . and PRAYED! ! ! I missed out on Number 5 and I was SOOO disappointed. But I got No 3. So I was thankful that God had heard my prayer, and for whatever reason I didn’t get my first choice, I did get my second choice.
So I moved in and everything was great. Due to my early morning shifts, and thus most mornings arriving at the tram stop literally across the road at 520am . . . I came to know why I didn’t get No 5. And I found myself being reminded every morning, and thanking God for what He didn’t give me, and thanking him for giving me Number 3 instead.
- The sound of the little green man at the pedestrian crossing . . . that ‘clacker’ sound would have been right outside my bedroom window . . . and there’s 3 crossings . . . I hadn’t considered that!
- The garbage truck . . . every Thursday morning. Imagine anticipating a sleep in before a late shift . . . only to be greeted by that sound of the garbage truck arm emptying all 9 units bins. I hadn’t considered that!
- The small shop front across the road by the tram stop which is actually a biscuit factory which starts super early and I don’t know what they do in there to make biscuits . . . but there’s a loud machine of some sort (I hesitated to cross the road to wait for the tram) that sounds like a massive air gun shooting out short spurts of air, followed by a whacking sound? I definitely hadn’t considered that!
- The tram bell every time it stops . . . AnNoYiNg! ! ! I hadn’t considered that!
Then back to this apartment . . . come winter . . . my Number 3 would soon reveal that it had an issue with condensation, and resulting mould, that only appears on the aluminium window frames. Hence why I’m now cleaning them . . . AGAIN . . . a ‘MUST DO’ task. ‘Damp rid’ was not the solution I hoped it would be.
As I was cleaning the window frames . . . I wondered why, when on inspecting the apartment, I had not seen the evidence of mould in the window sliding tracks? Why had I not concluded that the wooden rods to secure the windows (black with stains), was due to mould? Why did I conclude that the damaged sills and chipped paint was due to sun damage, rather than water running off the windows rotting the wood?
Hmmm . . . maybe because . . . from the outset of seeing the outside, I had already decided this was my apartment . . . and so I didn’t see on the inside, what I could have seen, if I’d kept an open mind. With only a 10 minute inspection time frame . . . I had rushed in . . . with all the other potential applicants . . . had a quick look . . . checked for critical things like air con, washing machine taps, good hot water system, nice balcony (albeit no scenic view), and a good stove. But now, in hind sight, the issue of mould is a very critical issue as it is the sole reason I am now looking to move again . . . because of the potential for serious health issues that I don’t want to take a chance with.
In reflecting on all of this . . . my thoughts went to life circumstances and situations that take place. How many times do we end up somewhere we don’t want to be, as a result of not considering ALL the possible options? Some obvious like the ‘green crossing man’ . . . others not so obvious, like the small shop front that’s actually a biscuit factory.
How many times do we set our heart on something because of what we see from the outside? And somehow we think that determines what’s on the inside. Maybe what we think we want, is not what we want at all! As the saying goes: Don’t judge a book by its cover! But we do it all the time . . . sometimes without even thinking about it. I certainly do! Especially when scrolling though rental properties online before even opening them up to look at the photos of inside. If I don’t like the outside, sometimes I don’t even bother to check out the inside photos.
How many times do we conclude “It’s a sign!” earlier than we should? Maybe “It’s a test!” instead. A test . . . not to judge the book by its cover, but to check out the inside first, with open eyes and an open mind, before setting our heart on something or drawing any final conclusion about it.
How many times do we put ourselves at risk of serious life issues, health or otherwise, because of something we thought we wanted, when in fact we didn’t have all the facts to make that decision wisely?
How many times do we pray and pray and pray for something? Without having considered all the options . . . things we haven’t noticed, things we don’t even know about, things we can’t know about . . . but God knows about . . . and yet we keep praying for Him to give us that thing. Have we considered the most important thing? That God knows best, wants what’s best for us, and will give us what’s best for us. But sometimes ‘allows’ us to have a ‘softer portion’ a ‘taste’ of what we fervently prayed for, so we can then see with open eyes and mind what he was protecting us from.
I REALLY wanted Number 5, but I got Number 3 as my second choice. I soon learnt why I DIDN’T REALLY want Number 5 . . . and then 6 months later I started learning why I shouldn’t have even been ‘Okay’ with Number 3. If only I had known . . . if only I had seen . . . I certainly don’t want any consequential health issues as a result of mould spores.
So now with all this hind sight, as I’m looking for a new place to call home . . . I’m looking with open eyes and an open mind. I’m not setting my heart on anything . . . although I still get excited when I see a place that looks really nice both on the outside and then on the inside. But I’m not drawing any conclusions until I’ve checked it out at an inspection. Then I will put in my application, and if it’s meant to be mine, then I believe it will be . . . but only if it’s ‘safe’ and ‘whole’ for me and my needs. I do not want to go from this home with a mould issue to another. God knows more, and He considers every aspect.