at the end of june, anthony found out that his job had an expiration date
which was the end of august
clearly, not the BEST timing in the world's eyes
but we couldn't help think
that God was probably up to something
we struggled for a few moments whether to apply at the townhomes we were interested in
finally settling on applying as we had planned
only stepping back if no job prospects had materialized for him by the time we were supposed to sign the lease in early september
a step of faith
and we continued tithing and giving beyond that when we felt so inclined
feeling that God has SO blessed us
that there's no reason to hang onto money that's not even ours
out of a spirit of fear
life went on
anthony began the job hunt
we were thankful that they had given him 2 months notice
but there were still some fearful moments
and then, in mid-july
i was driving home from job #1 on a friday when he called me
and the conversation started like this
"you are not going to BELIEVE the conversation i just...
actually...YOU'RE going to believe this."
he proceeded to tell me that our friends who had recently moved out of state
had been wanting to rent, rather than sell, their home
and that they really wanted us to live there
so much that they had low-balled the rent to $100 less per month than we'd be paying at the townhome.
when our friend T, the realtor handling all this
called him to tell him this
he explained that while that was an INCREDIBLY good deal
and one that would be perfect
we just weren't in a position right now to do that
because of his job uncertainty
and while we would obviously hate to not be able to pay rent at an apartment complex
we would REALLY not want to do that to friends
at that point she said "it's interesting you mention that..."
and explained that for some time these friends of ours
had been feeling that God might be asking them
to use this house as a ministry
to let people who are struggling financially
(just lost jobs, just starting out, paying down debt, etc)
stay in the house for a very reduced rent
or even free
we went to see the house the following sunday
and were absolutely floored
easily 3 times (at least) the size of the townhouse
(it's like God said "ok, I'll see your townhouse and I'll raise you...")
at the end of a cul-de-sac
facing the woods...
and it's perfect for so many reasons
our mission statement that we had to write in our marriage prep class went something like this
"our mission is to serve and love families through hospitality, writing and teaching."
we thought it would be years before we'd be able to REALLY put that hospitality thing to work
but this house? completely enables us to not only host large gatherings, but to offer beds and rooms to guests and friends for extended periods of time. it's SO our heart to do that, and God just handed us the perfect place to do so.
anthony loves to tell people that before we were ever engaged we talked about "dream homes" for WAY in the future. our list included the following *small* details
- a window over the kitchen sink (my wish)
- no tile tubs/showers (a's wish)
- a deck and nice backyard
- close to an interstate (a must in nashville) but a quiet neighborhood
- family friendly neighborhood
- a fireplace
- a big tub (me again)
- a HUGE kitchen
- lots of natural light
- a bonus room for a man cave (guess who ;-)
guys. this house? has every.single.detail and more.
my favorite part of the story has to do with a prophetic word that one of our pastors gave me a few months ago. he was talking about my life and the things that had been taken unfairly. and he said "there's a verse in the Bible that says that when the enemy steals something for you he has to repay it 7-fold" and that he really felt i would see fruit of that verse over the next several months, in every facet of my life.
when the mortgage company made that huge error last spring, i ended up with 10 days to move out of my condo
the other day i got a bit curious and decided to count the number of days from the day T had said "yes, absolutely start moving your stuff in the house whenever you'd like" to our wedding date.
i re-counted after the first count.
because the number? was 70. exactly 70. 7 times the amount of days i had to move a year and a half ago.
if i hadn't already been sure this was God...i certainly would have been at that moment.
meanwhile, anthony is working a temporary gig for the next several months
but we've been told to not pay a cent of rent until after our wedding.
don't you ever, ever doubt it