Termite Ridden Heart

October 12, 2017 by  
Filed under Humor, Stories

By Liz Cowen Furman –

My Mom lives in southern Colorado. She bought an old house that in the 1920s served as the corner grocery store. We were so happy for her. Her new home featured large front display windows with seats, an old fashioned cellar that once stored canned goods, lots of built in cabinets, and old seasoned hard wood floors throughout. However, in the first year after she purchased her home she realized it had been “flipped.”

A realtor purchased it in foreclosure, did a few cosmetic fix-ups and purposely hid some dire flaws. He then paid off the inspector and sold it to my Mom.

Half way through the winter, my husband had to re-plumb the entire house because the pipes froze. When we finally dug a way into the crawl space we discovered the realtor had boarded up and carpeted over the real basement entrance to hide that he had plumbed it with plastic irrigation pipes. He set a space heater near them turned on “high” to keep the pipes from freezing the first winter. We wondered why that first summer and fall was so hot in Mom’s living room. Once the space heater burned out and winter hit—frozen pipes. What was worse to discover in her crawl space than the frozen pipes, was the termite ridden foundation.

My sister, who lives near my Mom, tried to hire a local attorney. She discovered that the good ‘ol boy system was in full swing as no one would touch a case against this well-connected realtor.

So, we hired an attorney in Denver to write a threatening letter requesting he fix the problems. We promised to go public if they refused. Long story short, he fixed the foundation and other things. My Dave had already done the plumbing.

You can imagine the conversations in our home during that time. Many were in front of little ears we didn’t even realize were listening.

One afternoon, after his nap, our Matthew, then three years old, (now eighteen) came to me at the dining room table with his piggy bank in tow. He dumped the entire contents onto the table. There must have been twenty dollars in small change. He looked up at me with a big grin and said, “There, that sood fix Gama’s fandation”. He wasn’t old enough to say the words right, but he understood that “Gama BJ” was in trouble and thought he could fix it.

I can see why Jesus says for us to have the faith of a child. Children haven’t lived long enough to be poisoned by the world’s view. Matthew had money. “Gama BJ’s” foundation needed money to fix. Problem solved. He was willing to give all he had to help her.

We put his money in a box and sent it to her explaining that Matthew, all on his own, decided to send his piggy bank contents to fix her house. She cried.

But you know the amazing thing is that Matthew always has money. He often gives to help someone, yet he never seems to run out. I’m thinking God blesses a cheerful, helpful giver. In these tough times, when so many we know are struggling, I am often asking God to show me how to be more like His son. And, I am reminded of our son Matthew.

And, once in a while, I still pray for God to fix the termite ridden heart of a certain realtor in southern Colorado. Though I don’t know, maybe He already has.

About Liz Cowen Furman

Liz is an author, artist, encourager, mentor, teacher and popular speaker. However, her most important job is as mother to her three teen-aged boys and being a support to her husband, Appellate Court Judge, Dave Furman. All of whom give her much fodder for her writing and speaking (with permission of course). Find out more at www.lizcowenfurman.com

Comments

7 Responses to “Termite Ridden Heart”
  1. Liz:
    This is such a touching story of a child’s faith. As I read it, tears came to my eyes. I am thankful that the contractor finally corrected his ‘shortcuts’.

    • Thanks for reading! I know it wasn’t a funny one. But he was very funny when he said it. So sincere and sure that his change bank would do the trick.
      The Realtor didn’t fix everything but he did do the foundation.

  2. Steph Prichard says:

    Wait! You made me cry, not laugh! ;-D

  3. Dianne says:

    What a story, Liz.

  4. Mary says:

    What a great story. Love how your whole family got involved to help.

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