God Speaks Again

Early in the morning on the day we were to find out about the Chestatee Farms “museum”, the Lord awakened me to come meet Him in prayer. The moment my knees hit the floor, the Lord said, “I am not going to give you the house. I am going to give you more. But you will have to trust Me with this one.” And so, we were very excited (and not at all surprised) to hear that we lost the bid. But what was the “more” about? How was that possible?

The Lord encouraged me that the “trust me with this one” meant letting go of finding a home with acreage (like we had with our burned house). This freed us to begin looking at homes in subdivisions. Our Realtor was very patient with us in this change of direction, but probably a bit confused and concerned with our insistence on looking at “more” sized properties (we weren’t brave enough to tell him about the “more” message).

Our Failing Patience

If it was going to happen, we wanted to get into a new home before Beth started back to work. But things weren’t working out like we expected. One offer after another was refused. We placed a bid on a beautiful property in the Riverwalk Subdivision. Beth loved it, but the owners flat out refused our bid; even calling us (outside of protocol) to tell us they just couldn’t accept such a disparate offer. Time was running out. As the weeks went by, we became more doubtful about the “more” message.

It was now July, and we were getting antsy. To be transparently honest, gone was the “more” adventure, replaced by a desperate search for something “acceptable”. Oh, how quickly we can lose focus on, and trust in, the Faithful One.

And so, with our impatience getting the best of us, we placed a bid on a foreclosed house that we felt could be upgraded to meet our needs. Our Realtor called the next day with the news that our bid had been accepted. But there was something more – praise God for on-time surprises!

Our Impatience Meets God’s Perfect Timing

When God brings an adventure to its closure, He often does so quickly – so quick that it takes your breath away. We didn’t know it at the time, but He was working the timing out so that we would know it was all in His hands – even in our moment of doubt and self-decision.

When our Realtor said, “Your bid has been accepted, but something very strange has happened”, my heart jumped. It was electric, like God had dropped in an anticipation and answer at the same time. “The owners of the Riverwalk house have changed their minds and would like to sell you the house (for the amount we offered), if you are still interested.” Were we still interested? It was all I could do not to throw down the phone and run around the room, hoopin’ and hollerin’ (I did that later).

Beth and Sarah were out shopping when I called them. If I had known they were in the car, I would have waited. It’s a wonder they didn’t dance the car right off the road. Praise God for His extravagant joy!!

The Sum of God’s Blessing (So Far)

At the closing, the owners told us that they had been puzzled and frustrated that their beautiful home had not sold for more than two years; and then they said, “Now we know that He was holding it for you.” Praise God for His divine orchestration!! They even came over to the house to show us how things worked and how they had decorated it. They left after praying a blessing over our new home and our family. Praise God for the Body of Christ!!

As you can see, the sum of God’s blessing in this adventure cannot be measured in dollars, square footage, etc. But God has blessed us in practical ways that we would like to recognize:

  1. He moved us into a house that is twice the size of our burned home – still with nothing owed (we were out of debt before the fire);
  2. He provided an additional $15,000 for repairs – a house without maintenance for two years needs more repairs than you might think;
  3. He razed and removed our burned house – though it’s still weird to think that our home and belongings are buried somewhere; and,
  4. He left us with the 7.8 acres we had with our burned home – His response to Rob’s trust; and the over-the-top evidence of His extravagant love!!

We believe the blessings of this adventure are not over for us, and for those our new home will be used to bless. We are holding this gift loosely, because we know it is God’s possession. We ask that you pray for us to be good stewards with our new home.

Epilogue

Ironically, this tragedy has also been used by God to bring healing. The last three years have been challenging for us. At times we have felt torn apart by circumstances, fears and disappointments. But God has used this “tragedy-turned-adventure” to bring us together – in the shadow of His extravagant love. Could that be God’s intention in every tribulation? That has truly been our experience. It is the “God working all things to the good of those that love Him and are called to His purpose.”

We pray that in all things, you will also know the love, grace and power He desires to manifest in your lives.

In His Abounding Grace,

Rob, Beth, Sarah and Matthew