We came home on December 31st.
Sandy and I had been gone for a year to experience California, Oregon and the whole west coast scene. Our plan was to come back to the Atlanta area, rent a cabin in the North Georgia Mountains, have Christmas with our family during January, and then head back out to live in San Diego at the end of January.
That was the plan…
During the month though, things changed. A couple of business opportunities opened up for me in the area, and my bonus-daughter Callie, was being seriously courted by our now son-in-way, Tyler Sims. Sandy and I discussed it, and finally decided that as soon as Callie got engaged, everything else was going to be put on hold. She only gets to be Mother-of-the-Bride once, so we decided to stay. (As it turned out, Tyler proposed four months later. We made the right decision.)
The contract we had on the mountain cabin was for the month of January. We had nowhere else to go after that—we had sold our home a year before so that we could travel.
Towards the end of January, we were starting to stress. We’d been looking for homes in the area to rent—we didn’t want to buy at that point for two reasons. The economy was tanking and home prices were plunging, and, at that point, we really didn’t know how long we’d be staying. We’d found nothing that even closely matched what we needed. At the time, we had three storage units completely packed with our furniture. We needed a place that had plenty of room if we were going to stay, and we didn’t want to keep renting storage units in addition to a home.
We have some great friends named Mike and Peggy Warrick who are boaters. I call them boaters, but they’re really “shippers.” They own a huge houseboat on Lake Lanier—close to 100 feet long. It’s beautiful! Our idea was that they might possibly rent it to us for a month, while we found a more permanent place to live.
Mike was very gracious, and told me that he’d call me back. He called some friends who also had a houseboat on their dock. They were going to be out of town for the next month. They were fine with the idea, so we lived on this beautiful houseboat for the next month and a half.
God provided again, and in style. It was a luxury houseboat that had four bedrooms and was decorated to the hilt. We met all the neighboring boat owners, (who thought we were probably gypsies), and still enjoy relationships with them to this day.
March flew by. Couldn’t find a home. The stress started mounting again. (Why can’t I get this trust in the Lord thing right?)
John 16:24 says, “Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete.”
On a Monday afternoon, I was on a flight going down to Florida for the week. A friend of mine, Sherry Darden, had told about a book called “Write It Down, Make It Happen,” by Henriette Klauser. The premise of the book was that when we get very specific about what we want, and write it down on paper, strange things seem to happen. Most people never get exact, and they wonder why they don’t get what they want.
I was reading the book on the flight, and decided to get my journal out and write down exactly what I wanted in a home. I wrote it as a letter to God, telling him exactly what I wanted, and asking him to provide it for us.
It was really fun writing it out. I just let my mind go, and wrote down all the possibilities–in detail. As soon as I got off the plane and was walking through the airport, I called Sandy and asked her to the same. I told her what I’d done, but didn’t read her what I’d written—on purpose. I just asked her to write it out that night.
The next morning, I called her and asked her to read me what she’d written. Then I read her my description. They matched perfectly!
On to the story…
I got home very late on Friday night and didn’t arrive back to the houseboat until the wee hours of early Saturday morning. Sandy had told me that she’d made an appointment with our realtor for us to look at a home that morning at 8:30 a.m.
Quite frankly, I didn’t want to go. I was tired from the road, tired from lack of sleep, and tired of being disappointed by looking at houses that didn’t fit our needs. I even went as far as telling our realtor Linda, that I wasn’t in a very good mood and asked her to forgive me in advance.
We drove to the house. As soon as I saw it, I thought to myself, “That’s what I wrote down.” We got out of the car, and walked into the home. Beautiful! The lady who had lived there, had married a local doctor, and had moved into his home. This one had not been vacant long. She was leaving the custom window treatments, several beautiful oriental rugs, and most of the walls were faux finished. There was even a finished three-room basement for our pool table and for storage, and a beautiful pool in the landscaped backyard.
“She’s going to take it for the amount we are looking to spend?” I asked incredulously. The price was almost too good to be true. “Yes,” Linda told us.
So I made a lower offer, asking Linda to call it in. What did I have to lose? The worst that could happen was that she said no and we stayed with the original price. Sandy and I got in our car, drove about 100 yards down the street, stopped the car, and prayed together that the lady would accept the offer.
We got a call within five minutes. “Done deal,” we were told.
Jeremiah 29:11 says, “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
As I write this, we’ve lived in this beautiful home for a year and a half. It’s perfect for us, and our landlord is a joy to deal with. Perfect location, perfect home, we’ve been blessed.
So my question for you—What is it that you need? Right now? I want you to take a piece of paper and write it down. Exactly what you want. Write it to God, but make sure it’s in God’s will for your life.
And remember this–God is always faithful. Always!
Together, let’s see what happens.
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