An alligator in my home

A Christian Science perspective on daily life

The reports of a downturn in the residential real estate market in most areas of the United States remind me of having been placed in the uncomfortable, high-pressure, frustrating world of slow- selling or non-selling property.

This is a challenge I have faced several times. My sense of timing seems to have been always off. I got stuck with slow-selling or non-selling real estate, put in the cross hairs of an uncooperative market, having an old and a new mortgage at the same time, having my career held up, a job transfer canceled, and school plans fall apart.

Some real estate professionals refer to eating up your real estate finances in excess of your income as "alligatoring." It was awful to see my equity and cash being eaten up in that way.

At one particular time, turning to God, specifically as divine Mind, helped me stop this alligatoring. I learned to quietly listen to God, the source of all clear ideas.

I first thanked God for His munificence and care. Then I focused on the spiritual basis of home. Mary Baker Eddy, who discovered and founded Christian Science, wrote in "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures," "Pilgrim on earth, thy home is heaven; stranger, thou art the guest of God" (p. 254).

I could see that the physical structure that shelters my body, family, and material possessions, is not my true home. Instead, being at home is actually feeling that I am in God's presence, in His kingdom. Jesus said, "The kingdom of God is within you" (Luke 17:21). It is impossible for God, Mind, to abandon any of us.

This priority of learning more about my true home helped direct the actions I needed to take. I was able to discern the difference between what I wanted and what I needed.

Operating with the certainty of divine Mind guiding my actions, I was led to make the adjustments to my way of thinking about the real estate challenge that had caught me in the alligator scenario.

Rather than hoping for an anonymous buyer for my property to show up and give a fair – or any – offer, and then worrying if and when it would occur, I realized that owning property gave my family and me the opportunity and responsibility to love our home by preparing it to be in good condition and ready for the next family on the same basis of loving a home.

So I prepared our house to be the new home for a new family before I even knew who the buyer was. Even though the real estate transactions have been among the largest and most complex financial transactions I'd undertaken, I knew that divine Mind would keep my thought calm, clear, fearless, and simple.

With this foundation laid, I could do whatever practical things needed to be done. This included hiring capable, honest professionals to handle all aspects of the transactions.

It was no surprise to me then, when, even in the midst of an almost non-existent "sellers' market," buyers appeared, made a fair offer, and the property was sold just days before adverse tax rules of deductibility would be in effect.

The alligator and all that it stood for disappeared.

One thing
have I desired of the Lord,
that will I seek after;
that I may dwell in the house of
the Lord all the days
of my life, to behold
the beauty of the Lord,
and to inquire in his temple.
Psalms 27:4

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