Phew, what a ride! We are done with the house selling ... we did not sell. Yep, surprised me too. We received two offers on our house. Both of which were probably not realistic examples of the buyers that are out there (particularly since we're heading into the "hot real estate market time" in our region) - but they were the buyers that God wanted us presented with. Without going into the nitty gritty, God never allowed an offer that fit with where we were comfortable and in doing so made our decision to stay put easier for us. As we were trying to sell I kept thinking of those Israelites waiting to leave Egypt and remembering how God gave them the extra time there to gather the things they needed for the journey. So I / we kept chasing the carrot and were waiting for the right buyer. Well, frankly we got to the end of our ropes what with the cleaning and tidying and keeping neat and all that is so counter to our, honestly, way of life. God just pushed it gently over the edge for us to make the decision to take our house off of the market and to once again make it our home. And with that decision - boy o boy did the Relief Dam ever let loose!!
We've learned so much through this process. Particularly:
1. When God wants something done - or doesn't want something done - it will / won't happen.
2. The blessings that are all around you are sometimes hidden in your search for the next "thing" in life - sometimes it takes loosing or misplacing those blessings to realize how blessed you really are.
3. Family is the absolute most important thing in life, after God.
4. Good neighbors are a blessing and are not easy to find - if you've got them - do all you can to keep them.
5. Stop asking God to show you where to go or what to do and open up your eyes and ears to see or hear what it is He's been telling you all along.
6. Be always grateful for the trip He's allowed you to take and learn as much as possible along the way even if, like Jonah, it's taken you an awful long time to get to Nineveh.
We have made some decisions to live a little differently now that God has opened our eyes. When we started to look at how much we would be spending on a new house, we kept thinking of how many better uses there were for that money. We also saw what we were spending our money on and have made conscious decisions to change that to better let God use that money. We've learned how nice our home is - honestly just because it's double the price doesn't mean that it still isn't base builder grade quality with absolutely NO updates or upgrades. And we've learned how important it is to our kids to have a place to call home. Home is definitely where you are all together and it isn't the structure you live in, but sometimes that structure is just the thing that kids need to see to feel safe and comfortable.
How did I know we made the right decision? When my oldest said to me (with quite a bit of relief in his voice): "Mom I'm so happy we aren't moving, I really like our home." Dust bunnies and all? They have once again taken up residence ...