I am so excited right now I can hardly contain myself. Over the past year, God has proven Himself not only faithful, but ready to place His blessing upon our committment far beyond what we could possibly imagine. Allow me to tell you what God has done this time!
As many of you know, we have had our house on the market since last October. When we put it up for sale, we decided to sell it ourselves because we believe that He has planned this whole process out so completely that He already knew when He would sell the house and who was going to buy it. All we needed to do was TRUST in His timing and His provision. There were several times over the past couple of months that we thought about listing it with a dear friend of ours who is an agent, but every time we started to list it, we would start getting phone calls from people showing interest, so we believe God was saying, “Be patient and let me sell your house.” So we would wait.
On New Year’s Day, I mentioned to Tony that I had decided to go ahead and finish the paper work and list the house with our friend who is an agent. I decided to try to sleep in the next morning and go see her near lunch. At 8:00 my phone started ringing with people calling about the house. One of the phone calls was from a gentleman from California. He explained that he has grown children in the area and he often comes home to visit his children and grandchildren and would like to go ahead and purchase a place of his own so that when he comes to visit, he will have his own place and when he retires soon, it will already been “home” and “grandpa’s place.” He said that he was getting ready to fly back to California, but he would like for his children to come look at our house. That evening, his children did come look at our house, and we were blessed to discover that he has a large family. His children were delightful, and his grandchildren were precious. We could already see them enjoying this place as “grandpa’s house.” Their time here was more than a house showing, it was a very nice visit.
The next day, his son came back to look over the property during the day, and his daughter came back two days later to take lots of pictures inside and outside the house. Again, I enjoyed visiting with both of them, and I just had a peace about them being here. On Saturday, we were at a soccer game, and the son called me and said his father was about to make an offer. I got so excited and started praying. Sure enough, the email came Saturday night.
When I opened the email, my heart sank. His offer by email was far below what we were asking. I was not only disappointed by the amount of the offer, but I had actually become pretty excited about the family that would be enjoying this home for years to come if he bought it. Reluctantly, I emailed him back and thanked him for his offer but said we could not accept. We counter offered and began waiting and praying for his reply.
Sunday morning, we shared the news with our Sunday School class. They agreed to pray for us, and our dear friend, Jackie Luckey, said, “Ask God for a number. That’s what I did before I left. I asked God to give me a number, and then you commit to not take anything less than that.” So we prayed for a number. By the time we got home from church, God had revealed to both me and Tony what that number was. We just prayed that if this was the person He had been preparing to buy our house, he would offer this number.” Later Sunday afternoon my phone rang. It was the gentleman from California. He asked me many questions about the house and apologized for all the questions but that he has never bought a house sight unseen before. He said that his children have been pressuring him to trust them and go ahead and buy it, so he thought he’d just call and ask a few questions and explore some possibilities. We ended up talking for over an hour. He said that not only have his daughter and son fallen in love with the house and property, but they have fallen in love with us. He felt like this place is the place he is supposed to retire to. He wanted to make an offer that would be beneficial to both him and us. He then asked me what we would think about us just continuing to live here, even after he buys it, until July when we leave for Haiti. He also asked if we might could work out an agreement to leave most of the furniture in exchange for a $10,000 donation to our ministry. He even offered to let Jonathan live in the apartment while he is in college if he wanted to. At this point, I am just blown away! I calmly said that all of these things were very attractive and that we would look forward to his counter offer.
I told Tony everything he said and I could hardly talk for crying! If this deal worked out, we would not have to worry about moving everything out of the house. We would not have to worry about where Jonathan would live while we are gone, AND we would receive a sizable donation to our ministry. UNBELIEVABLE! I immediately sat down to email Stan Buckly and Barbara Gladney. While I was emailing them, I saw that I received the email from the gentleman from California. I was almost afraid to open it! As I clicked on the email, I prayed, “Lord, we only want your will for all involved.” As I read the words on the screen, I began to shake and tears began to roll down my cheeks. The amount of the offer was EXACTLY the number God had given us, plus we can remain here even after the sale until we leave for Haiti in July, plus Jonathan has the option of staying in the apartment even after we leave, plus he is going to make a $10,000 donation to our ministry in exchange for our leaving the majority of the furniture. WOW. Every muscle in my body felt like jello and there were no intelligble words that I could form out of my mouth.
Even now as I type this post, I feel like we are caught up in a dream. What we have learned from this experience is that God wants to do for all of us things that we cannot possibly imagine. There are many times in our lives when we imagine what we want or how we would like for our lives to work out, and we can either work really hard to make that dream come true, or we can hand our lives over to the Lord and say, “Not our will, but YOURS be done. We are yours.” The truth is, God’s will for us is oh so much more than what we think is best. If we just let go of the control of our lives and give God complete control, He will unfold a plan that is absolutely amazing.
We are so excited about what God is going to do next. Every day seems to bring another exciting event or blessing. We are so very thankful for the family that will move into our home and enjoy it for years to come. We also know that the future God has for us is beyond our wildest dreams. As we look forward to what comes next, all we can say is, we don’t know what the future holds, BUT GOD does! And as he slowly but surely reveals it to us, we can only say, “Thank you, Lord.” All we want is to be used by Him to bless others. When we are allowed to be instruments of his goodness, we indeed are blessed. God is good….ALL THE TIME!!!