This week turned a major corner when Shawn came back in town earlier than expected. Whew. You single moms and moms with husbands who are deployed - I wish I could give you a big hug and a few hours of free childcare. Making big life decisions alone just isn't easy.
This morning, we had a chance to see the house we just purchased - which we had only seen for about 15 minutes up until now - and we fell in love with it all over again. God has already answered so many of our spoken and unspoken prayers when He brought us to this house: tons of natural light, all new hardwood floors, extra space for Liam to play, a guest room, a fenced back yard, a partially finished basement with a wood burning stove and so much potential, a brand new kitchen with a gas stove, and oh... cutting our mortgage in half.
When we decided to move, our #1 criteria was that we cut our mortgage in half. But the Lord was sweet to provide an even better-built house (so said our inspector!) that has more space, has been completely renovated, and is in a safe neighborhood. All of those things feel like huge bonuses when we expected something smaller and not as nice for as much as we were willing to spend.
We met one of our neighbors today who said, "We love this neighborhood because it's so diverse. A Vietnamese family lives over there, a Mexican family on the other side, black people, white people - we've got it all!" It sent shivers down my spine. God just knows the desires of our hearts and fulfills them without us even asking.
This lousy photo from my phone is all I've got to show you so far, but it's one of my favorite parts of the house: a kitchen with lots of windows and all white cabinets. I cannot wait.
Yesterday, I spent some time meditating on one of my favorite passages in all of Scripture: Titus 3. It's basically the truth of the gospel in a nutshell.
"At one time we too were foolish, disobedient, deceived, and enslaved by all kinds of passions and pleasures. We lived in malice and envy, being hated and hating one another. But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life." - Titus 3:3-7, emphases mine
So what does this have to do with a house?
This passage is such a clear-cut reminder that anything good that comes in my life didn't come because I was so righteous. Because I made good decisions or behaved well. This house wasn't given to us because we saved our money and made wise choices. He gave us the house because He is kind. He is merciful. He loved us and saved our souls even when we were dead in our sin and completely worthless to Him.
That kind of love just astounds me - and when I hear that our neighborhood is super diverse and I see a backyard that's perfect for our son and I learn a hundred more things that just fit our family so well - I can only see His fingerprints all over it.