Last week, I began the story of two perfect houses. If you missed part 1, click here.
When the Grands passed away, we thought, “Now, we can return to Florida!” Nope. Richard and I know we can see only what’s right before us, and we make judgments based on what’s behind us, so we trust God’s satellite view when we’re making decisions. Each year, we’ve asked God, “Is it time to go to Florida?” Silence. Often, God has reinforced Tulsa–bringing me new creatives with whom to collaborate and higher opportunities at work, giving my husband coworkers he enjoys. This spring, I was reminded how much I enjoy the long months of 70-80 degree weather and flowers, the bike trails and parks, the outdoor music and art. When I worried that staying would be letting him down, Richard said, “Home is wherever you are.”
Aunt Jeri’s house needs some repairs, so finally we said, “Lord, we would seriously like to hear from You on this. Do we fix it or go?” God said, “Look in Tulsa.” I began looking casually, perusing Zillow at night when I was supposed to be sleeping. Then one day, God said, “NOW. TULSA.” A few weeks later, we walked in the door of a home He obviously had fun preparing specifically for us.
Let me give you some background. We like cozy nooks, and nearly every place we’d looked had an open floor plan. This house is segmented and cozy. When we moved into Aunt Jeri’s house, Grandpa filled it up with gorgeous antique furniture. He had a wonderful eye for woodgrain that was art without need for artifice. The master bathroom vanity is an antique buffet that looks remarkably like the tiger oak buffet we have in our living room.
Since the day we moved to Aunt Jeri’s house, I thought it would be cool to add brick or stone to the main living room wall, to give it that “old ruins” effect you see in Mexican restaurants. I never did it, not being much of a DIY-er. Our new house has a gorgeous stone fireplace that covers an entire corner of the living room and totally brings that effect with class. It reminds me of the cliffs at Redbud Valley and Natural Falls, where I love to hike.
I adore Mexican decor–the brightly colored ceramic lizards and clay pots as well as the “ruins.” Throughout the house, outlets and light switches are framed in hand-painted Mexican ceramic switch plates. And get this–in the antique master bath vanity is a hand-painted ceramic sink made in Mexico. But God didn’t stop there.
My Pinterest “Dream Home” page has at least ten photos of home libraries. When we toured the mansions in Newport, Rhode Island, a few years ago, the libraries were our favorite rooms. My office in our new home has two entire walls of bookshelves.
My taste is quirky, folks. God knows that. Some realtors might have made the owners change the very features which drew us, but I can just hear God saying, “Hey! Look what I have for you!”
AND…it keeps getting better. The back of the house is lined with lemongrass that’s as tall as I am. Lemongrass is one of my three favorite herbs. I was actually trying to grow it at the other house. And there’s sage and chives out front, just in case my basil and Rau Ram need company.
We moved in Friday night, and I didn’t stop bouncing until around 1:30 when I dissolved into the mattress in our new bedroom. I woke around 6, just in time to see the pink streaks fade to white and then blue in the sky overlooking our patio. I sat in awe for a little while, then strolled around looking again at the special touches that were perfect for us.
God sees you.
God sees you.
If you’ve been unsure, stop and notice. God sees you.
He knows what you like. He knows what you will like that you have yet to discover. This house was posted only a few days before we found it. The Creator of the Universe enjoys decorating your path with love notes, little smiles, practical but totally personal ways to say, “Hey, I was thinking of you while you slept. Check it out!”
Listen. Align yourself with right, keep coming back when human nature takes you off-course. Connect. Let go of unfulfilled desires that keep you from recognizing the good around you. Be honest about your pain, confusion or questions, but then put them in the back seat while you find ways to spend quality time with the One Who loves you. You wouldn’t spend a whole date fussing about the food or demanding gifts, would you? Not if you wanted a second date. You’d ask questions, give and receive compliments, laugh at silly jokes, tell stories about your life. Do the same thing with God. Nurture the relationship. It’s the best. Then run your plans by the One with the bird’s eye view. Go when and where you hear clearly.
Saturday, when I went to Aunt Jeri’s house to pack some more things, I had to stop for a few minutes and just cry with joy. There among the disarray of moving, I was surrounded by special touches which had been just right for us. Now, that house will bless us in new ways and be a sanctuary for someone else.
If in my entire life, I could give you only one thing, I’d like to inspire a relationship that allows you to have moments like that. God sees you. Say hi.
Psalm 130:5 NIV I wait for the Lord, my whole being waits, and in His word I put my hope.
Psalm 127:1 NIV Unless the Lord builds the house, the builders labor in vain.
Would you post a comment and tell me what plans you have allowed God to change? How have you been blessed because of this decision?