A fixer upper. I always thought that's what my husband and I would find and get when we finally purchased a home. Every home is going to require some work at some point, but I envisioned our first house as being in disrepair. I didn't give God enough credit.
Isn't it typical that sometimes we expect little, thinking that big is impossible?
We have been in our new home for five months now, and this house is one of many testaments that God has been directing our path entirely. Every step we have taken God has used to lead us. There is no other explanation.
Our first home was a rather run down small little mobile home. It was home for 7 years and we outgrew it. We lived simply in it, doing minor repairs here and there to make it more homey. We painted, my husband replaced the counter top. I sewed curtains and put up little decorations. We wanted to get out of there long before we actually did. We repeatedly looked at houses and even thought about buying a couple different places. It just never seemed "right". We wanted to be smart about buying a house and making such a big decision.
We sold our sweet little old trailer. A couple younger than us with a cute little girl bought it and made it their first home, just as we had when we first got married. It was bitter sweet. I wanted to be out of there, but the memories made in that house are embedded deep. Newlyweds, our first Christmas together, bringing home our first baby, newly formed traditions, so much love. I remember our lilies in the yard and the first tree we planted. I remember that Black Locust tree that I shook my fist at every spring when it dropped hundreds upon hundreds of pods that I had to rake and bag. I still think of that house with warmth and fondness.
Once we sold the trailer, we moved to a duplex. It was a good arrangement. We rented it month to month which provided a flexibility that we had never had before. We knew that whenever we found something more long term we would be able to leave at the drop of a hat. It was reassuring to know that we weren't tied down. We lived there during the warm summer months. There were storms that summer that were terrifying, and terrifyingly beautiful. We lived upstairs. In addition to being on the second story we were at the top of a hill and overlooked a soy bean field. We could see a long ways, it was breezy, and the air was clean. We saw turtles, groundhogs, snakes, all kinds of bugs, a bat (eek!) and we learned to live differently! Change is hard, but it helps and makes you stronger.
We knew we wanted to buy a house and we moved in with our in laws temporarily to help us save money. It was short lived, but a huge blessing. We were able to find another place to live that would sustain our quickly growing family for as long as we needed it to.
We moved back to the trailer park into a newly installed mobile home, and signed a year long lease. All the appliances were there, it was new, clean, it was move in ready. We were excited to be there and it was really wonderful. Looking back I realize that it was the perfect situation to be in prior to buying a house.
The home was nice enough that we weren't in a hurry to leave, but not SO nice that we wanted to stay long term.
After looking at many houses and bidding on several that fell through we found a house that we thought we wouldn't have a chance at getting unless God wanted us to have it. We prayed about it every day, at every interval imaginable. Prayers kept getting answered and things with the house continued to move forward.
Fast forward and here we are living in our house. This house is much more than I ever expected. It's perfect for our family with four bedrooms, a basement, a cozy Family Room. It's more than we need. But isn't that they way that God works? He gives us more than we need, and often. He provides. He sustains. He blesses.
God has blessed us so much, and when I sit back in our house and think on the journey that we took on the way to this home I am struck with awe at how much God must love us. We don't deserve this immense blessing, and yet He put us here. I only hope and pray that we can use this blessing to bless others with.