This is going to be perfect Catholic blog fare, but I feel very sing-y from the rooftops-y, so here you go. Let's recap.
1. I start praying for a big enough house in Seattle, oh, two-ish, maybe three-ish years ago. Because seriously? The only way we could get a big enough Seattle house is if God just dropped it into our laps. I believe that that totally happens, but it's a big ask, you know? Best to start praying ASAP.
2. After praying and praying and praying (and intense stressing), we put the townhouse on the market and it sells in 11 days. At first we are annoyed that we didn't get asking price. Later we consider ourselves Damn Lucky we sold it at all.
3. After praying and praying and praying (and intense stressing) the perfect rental house pops up on the weekend we most desperately want to sign a lease. It's ours.
4. I continue to pray for a big enough Seattle house. However I am RAWTHER SAWTISFIED with my position: happily renting, happily content to watch prices drop, happily patient for The Perfect House. Everything is SO going my way. I am the smartest person on the planet. I am SO in charge. In fact we are SO pleased with the way things are going that
5. we go to Disneyland.
6. We come back from Disneyland. And hey! Landlord is selling our house! Like, TOMORROW! WHAAA?
7. PANIC ENSUES
8. We think about buying our rental house. Because we have temporarily lost our minds. Also we are terrified of having to settle for Something Out There, because I've been seriously looking for the last three months and THERE IS NOTHING OUT THERE. (Um, that we can afford. Important point.) The thought of renting for another year totally bums us out. But what other option do we have?
9. I kick the house search into high gear. Agent and I go see about 10 houses on Tuesday morning. I fall in love with something old, vintagey, cute, precious - all the things my husband does not particularly like. But I love it, so I will make him love it, and it will be ours.
10. Phillip goes to see the house the next day. I'm right: he doesn't like it. But there's this other house that popped up just that day, that we go to see because we're open to seeing anything, and hmmm... it's ginormous. And it's in Seattle.
11. The next day, after praying, praying, praying (and intense stressing) we decide to write an offer. Except Phillip is working late that night and isn't always available and when I go to bed thinking that our offer is on its way to the seller, IT IS NOT. Because a Certain Someone neglected to initial the final document.
12. I find this out the next morning. I also find out there is another offer on the table. I THINK about panicking, but I do not. Because... ??? Because I have been praying, praying, praying and while I am not 100% sure about THIS house, I am 100% sure that God will give us a house, and this is all part of how it's going to work.
13. Agent says this is all to our advantage, because now we can get rid of our first offer and go right in with our best most aggressive offer. And we do. We are strong buyers. We're pretty confident. But we're also anticipating having the sellers play the buyers off each other and who knows how long that's going to take, or what we'll have to do. I pray and pray and pray, but I do not pray that God will give us the house. I close my eyes and tell God that I know he is in charge. I know that's he's on top of this. I want what he wants for us. I feel like this house is ours, but I'm not going to go there yet, and it feels wrong to pray that someone else DOESN'T get the house. I cling to the knowledge that God has this covered. He knows what we need.
14. I sleep better that night than I have since we got home from vacation.
15. We're anxious in the morning. The sellers are meeting to talk about our offer at 9. We watch the clock hit 9. We talk about other things. At 9:30 Agent calls to say the house is ours. Our offer was way better than the other offer, plus the sellers loved the cover letter Agent wrote, a letter that included a family picture. Which I thought was corny, but HEY. WE HAVE A HOUSE.
A big enough house. In Seattle. At the exact moment we needed one.
Other things have felt prayed over in my life. Exceptionally, completely, extremely prayed over. I keep meaning to write the How I Started Dating Phillip story, not the cutesy story, but the real prayed-over story. But this, the house...
I have said, in my mind, "God, if you want us to stay in this town, you'll have to give us a house," approximately seven bajillion times. Flat out. Not nicely. It's just fact. AND HE DID.
It's not The Perfect House. It's got a weirdo fireplace and 80s cabinets and a layout I'm still not sure about. It's not in a cute trendy neighborhood. It's not at ALL the sort of house I thought we would buy. But oh my goodness is it big enough. And in Seattle, still close to everything we want to be close to. Including a Catholic church and school, about two blocks away, and how can I believe this house is so prayed over and not totally wonder if that's where God wants us to be?
More discernment in my future, apparently...