Do you have a list in your head of things that are possible and things that are just not ever going to happen?
Well, a house for us here in Morro Bay was on that list for me. I mean, at our age, who has $500k+ for what would be $180-250k in other parts of the States?
Well, on Thursday we had our inspection on a new house. It’s almost double the size of our house now (at 1750 sq. feet), has a small front yard, and has 3 bedrooms!
When we moved back to the USA from our 5 years in China we knew very specifically that God was leading us to this town. Having no idea what was in store but just trusting what we felt in our gut and little signs along the way.
We felt like God said to just get healthy and in 2 years think about what is ‘next’. Well, 2 years to the day that we moved here we were being ordained as pastors of our church. Something that I not only never saw coming, but that I used to admittedly say would NEVER HAPPEN! Me, in a formal church setting? Not going to happen!
God has a funny sense of humor. I fell in love with this community, with this church, and that is where God met us on our journey to restoration after leaving 15 year of full-time missions. The one place I was running from, was where God captured my heart, the local church.
So, about the house.
I love the house we have been living in. But, it’s less than 1000 sq. feet, and yard space only big enough for a trampoline. As the boys have been getting bigger the house has been getting smaller. (Now, before those who don’t know me judge me, I have never once not been thankful for this house. I’ve lived all over the world so I understand that 1000sq feet to live in is a gift. But that’s not the point of this post…)
The other internal battle I would fight, and feel guilty to admit, but in all honesty it was real, was…
Is this a dream I have to give up because of the line of work we’re in? Wanting to admit that I want a house, that a little extra space would be amazing, and even though we believe God called us here, could that actually ever happen? Never wanting to share that because it felt so blasphemos to say, but it was there. Because my husband’s dream and gift is to teach about God, does that mean he will forever have jobs that don’t pay what he would make if he were a speaker in a different sphere of society?
So, with those limiting beliefs, I would always put the house idea to the back of my mind. Yet, say in my heart that it was something I really wanted in order for us to fully settle in here more. But, aside from all the miracles I’ve seen in my life, and knowing that God is a good Father, a house here was even too big for him in my mind. I mean, does he know how much they cost?
You do what you do because you love it, the money is just a benefit of serving others through your passions. I think of my teacher friends, who don’t get paid nearly what they are worth for what they do for our kids, what are the dreams they put aside to do what they love? But it still takes money to do the things you love and meet the needs of life.
So about 6 weeks ago my husband saw a house for sale and it was a foreclosure. He was talking to his parents about it, and we went from never getting a house here to them discussing making another investment in property out here. WHAT? Yes, in a matter of a week we went from a house not being an option to putting an offer on this super awesome house.
We didn’t get that house. Our offer came in second. While I was trying maintain my maturity, I was super bummed. While it wasn’t wise, I had let my heart fully dive into what it would be like to have a bigger house.
What it did though, was open me up to the truth. To stop trying to be so mature and just admit that it’s something we need! My counselor called this a ‘positioning move’. That house positioned my heart to be ready to accept and acknowledge that we needed a new house.
After waiting to see if the other buyers would back out of that house, we began looking at other options. Chris’s parents were here 2 weekends ago and we took a full day to look at all the options. All the houses had pros and cons, but nothing jumped out to us like that one we had first offered on did.
Duane, Chris’s step dad said we will just have to see what happens. Having this expectation and faith in this area that I didn’t have.
The next morning, our realtor called us and wanted to meet asap. A house had just gone on the market that morning, 4 houses down from where we are now. So we went to see it, and it was beautiful inside and out. We were the first people in to see it, and the first people to make an offer, and within 48 hrs our offer was accepted!
None of us could believe it. The timing was just crazy. That his parents were here, that it went on the market that day, that it’s on the same street as the current house they own, WHAT?!
Everyday as Chris and I process there is more we are realizing as to why it’s perfect for us and the boys. Even little desires and things I’ve liked about houses we lived in when I was a kid. That we have a house 4 houses down from this one that as our parents get older and may need support we can offer that to them. That it has space so I can host friends! That the master bedroom is big enough I can set up my office space to coach women.
What are the life lessons I’m taking away and still processing from this? Here are just a couple:
- If in 6 weeks I am about to move into what I felt was impossible for even God to provide for us, so what else am I thinking is too big? Or scared to dream for?
- I try to figure things out and want steps 1-10 about how life and God should work. Tell me the rules or expectations and I will follow. But it doesn’t work like that. Things happen for each person differently and we can never judge or think we know the path to get things done.
- A gift. Sure we are paying rent, but the fact that my in-laws would invest in something that is so expensive just for our family to use, is humbling. For no other reason than we are a part of the family, and family takes care of each other? That I have done nothing to earn someone doing something this insane for me, I just get to accept it. His stepdad’s generosity, hard work, and love is allowing for me to get my hearts desire. GRACE.
- Despite all the reasons why I feel I haven’t earned this, or don’t deserve it, it’s mine. It’s a gift, and a gift is to be celebrated.
So, there you have it. There is much more to say but this is already long!
What I want to leave with you is this:
What dream is too crazy for you to imagine could ever happen? What’s too big for your best efforts and/or even God provide?
Do what you love, and do it well. Trust that your faithfulness is sowing seeds that you will harvest one day. Provision will come in random ways, we just have to have our eyes open to see it. It’s not always financial, or a house. Sometimes it’s a friend to share your life with, a promotion at work, a great school for your kids, dinner with your spouse, a moment where you felt God seeing you.
It’s always there.
Oh, and the house we first wanted and came in 2nd? Something happend and the former owners who were in default by like 3+ years ended up in a lawsuit with the bank. So it still hasn’t closed and may not for up to a year. Can you imagine if I had ‘got it’ and then lost it? In a weird way, that being a NO, despite all our best efforts and offer, was a blessing that saved me from heartache.