Typically, I feel like I have a strong sense of what the "right" thing to do in planning for our lives is. I may not always be able to control the when's or how's, but I tend to know the what's.
With this house hunt issue, I've been a complete and total wreck.
Price point? Location? Size of house? Number of bedrooms? Schools nearby?
I've had no answers - none. Each time I came up with a "solution" to one problem, it seemed to create three new issues in other areas.
Then, we came across what seemed like the perfect house. It was HUD owned, meaning basically a foreclosure, but the bones of the house were awesome and the location was perfect. Not to mention, our last house started as a forclosure, and for whatever reason, Casey and I really enjoy the challenge of renovation.
We put in an offer ($20k above asking, no less), and were outbid. Handily.
This was a pretty low point for me, because I wasn't sure where to go next. That house just seemed to answer all of those questions on which I was totally lost. It was back to feeling like I had no idea what the next step should be.
To my surprise, another HUD-owned property in the same neighborhood, just a few blocks over in fact, came on the market not too long afterward. There was one catch, though: it's listing price was much, much more expensive.
Knowing that the house would need literally thousands of dollars in work before we could even move in, I put in a lowball bid that I knew would never be accepted. I mean, really. If we'd lost one at $20k over asking, what hope did we have when the offer wasn't even asking? Casey hadn't seen the property, but a great house in this neighborhood was just too good not to try.
Over the next few days, I didn't think about it again. I told Casey what I had done and he agreed it was a good move because we loved the neighborhood, but I assured him we'd never get it. We kept looking, but only half-heartedly. Nothing seemed to be right. We finally agreed to give it up until after the baby is born. It's just too much stress at a time when we should be focusing on our little family.
He had just e-mailed this very thing to our realtor when she wrote back with some unexpected news:
No problem if you're ready to stop looking, but your bid was accepted.
Um... whaaaat??? I was in total shock.
My mind immediately jumped to all the reasons we needed to be cautious. With a decision this important on the line, I couldn't afford to be swept up in the emotions of wanting that house. Not to mention, of course, my husband needed to actually see it...
So off we went. Leah and I drove from my mom's, while Casey met us from the office.
As I have been doing over this whole issue, I prayed a lot of the way up to the house. I just kept asking God to give me wisdom and discernment to know His will. Not to be caught up in what I want, but giving me eyes to see what move He would have me make. I told him that I trust him, whatever the answer should be.
As I was praying these words to God, and literally as we drove the last 3 minutes leading to the driveway, this song came on the radio. I might add that it was the third time that day I'd heard the song, as if a very clear message were being sent. The proverbial neon sign that I've prayed for, given my total lack of clarity.
It played until I pulled into the driveway, and by that time, I was in tears, overwhelmed with what I felt was a very clear message.
The news once inside just got better and better with every breath. Every potential pitfall that I had come up with to worry about not only melted away, but the deal kept getting sweeter and sweeter until it was absolutely clear (as if it hadn't already been): this was our house.
I am still in awe at the way God moves, and how He delivers in ways that are bigger than what I could have dreamed. The final hurdle is our inspection, which will happen next week, but if everything looks good, we'll be taking ownership in about 30 days, and moving in shortly after the baby is born. WOW.
I feel blessed to have quite a lot of miracles in my life: my wonderful husband, beautiful daughter, soon to be son; among them I have to count this fantastic home in which to keep all those precious treasures.