Nineteen months ago we sold our two story house. We were excited to have a break from home ownership, and to rent for just a year while we searched for our “forever home” (here on earth anyway). That was our plan. In the meantime…we have looked at so many houses, online and in person, it’s enough to make your head spin. We have prayed and contemplated moving out of the area. We thought we wanted to move back to the country, then decided at this point in our lives we are better off staying in a neighborhood. That way it’s more convenient to take our walks and to be close to everything. We have come to the conclusion that unless God does something major (like He did when we knew we were supposed to move here from upstate NY!), this [area] is home.
Here’s the kicker: Over the past several months there have been five…count them…five houses that we have attempted to put an offer on. In every single instance we have gotten word from our realtor that the house had already gone under contract…before he could even write the offer. So back to last Thursday morning. Actually it began Wednesday afternoon when our realtor called. He informed me that house number four had just gone back on the market if we still wanted to make an offer. I told him we’d discuss it and I would let him know what we wanted to do the next day (Thursday).
Thursday morning I was sitting at the table having coffee with God, like we do most mornings. I was reading Psalm 119 starting at verse 105…and singing. I simply can’t read that verse without singing it…at least in my head! “Thy Word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.” I started singing it as a prayer, and asking God to guide me to a scripture that would please, shine some light on this path of searching for a home to buy. Before I had even begun to search for another scripture, I glanced at the clock and thought I’d better call the realtor before it got any later. Now normally, that would be a big distraction during my quiet time, but here’s the conversation: Realtor:”Hey there. I’ve got something to tell you but you go first.” Me: “Well, we wanted to take another look at the house and probably put an offer on it…but I’m guessing that’s not going to happen.” Realtor: “It’s already under contract.”
Five houses, second time on the fourth one, gone before the ink could even touch the paper! That my friend, is not a coincidence. That is our loving Heavenly Father guiding us. He knows how much we want our own home again. He is also aware of how we want to follow His perfect will and plan for us. I always joke that sometimes I need a neon sign. Well I don’t think it could be much brighter than that, so that’s why I couldn’t stop smiling. I felt His nearness and sensed His loving care in a very real and personal way that day.
Micah 7:7 says; “Therefore I will look to the LORD; I will wait for the God of my salvation: my God will hear me.” And he will also provide what he knows we need. When our plans don’t seem to be working out, we should always look to the Lord and wait for Him to guide, to light the way. He usually has a better plan anyway.
Along this journey, God has been drastically changing our perspective and desires. As a result, our priorities are changing. A certain kind of house is no longer as important as it once was. What is important is my husband, after working so hard for many years being able to (semi) retire in a few short years. Something he cannot do if we have another huge mortgage hanging over our heads. So we (honestly, mostly me), have had to adjust some of our dreams and expectations. Along the way, as I let go of my own dreams or expectations, he is replacing them with new and better ones. But though we keep looking, we are beginning to feel like home ownership may not be in our future again. What if God says “no” to us owning our own home again? Am I okay with that? I’m trying to be. The jury’s still out on that one…but I honestly will be okay, if that is what God has for us.
We all have dreams and expectations of what we picture our future to be like, and there is nothing wrong with that. But what if…what if God in his Sovereignty and his perfect will allows circumstances, or whatever, to change our direction? Are we willing to let go of our own dreams and expectations for His plans for us? Whether it’s the kind of house we live in, how we expect our grown children to turn out, what kind of job or health we have…whatever it may be…are we willing to let go of our own, for His?
I don’t know if we are going to buy a house again or not. But this I do know; when our earthly future seems uncertain, and circumstances make no sense, I will trust in the Lord with all my heart and not rely on my own understanding. I will acknowledge Him in all my ways and He will direct my paths (Proverbs 3:5-6).
Do you have plans that aren’t turning out as you expected? Is there something maybe God is nudging you to let go of? Look to Him for direction. He is faithful. He will listen and answer you.
Please share how God has provided for you when things were uncertain. It’s a way we can encourage each other!