Monday, September 28, 2009

A Step of Faith

For the last 5 months, we have been trying to sell our townhouse by owner. We had a buyer – she backed out. We lowered our price – still no other offers. We decided to list with a realtor, even though we’ve lowered our price so much that we are already losing money, let alone the $5,000+ we would have to pay a realtor. But without another option, we were ready to sign with a realtor this week.

Joel was out of town this weekend visiting friends, so I was preparing Sunday morning for our last open house as “for sale by owner” when our realtor called about the house we wanted to purchase. She informed me there was another offer placed on the house, and we had to decide if we were going to take the subject to sale contingency off the purchase agreement we had signed, or if we wanted to lose the house. Oh, and I had 1 hour to decide. With Joel out of town, a dirty house, and 1 hour to decide what to do, I naturally started to panic.

Do we skip this house and find a different one? Do we bite the bullet and get the house, even though ours has not sold in five months? How can I hold an open house in less than two hours? I immediately called Joel so we could make our decision, then I called my mom so she could help me clean/watch Brady.

I had all of 30 minutes to think about this decision before I signed the paperwork. I am a planner, I like to be in control, I don’t like risk or the unknown. This decision was all of those things. It impacted the financial well-being of our family. I didn’t want to make a decision based on emotion.

While we were trying to decide, I kept hearing a voice in my head say, “How much faith do you have, Cassie? How much faith?” Over and over this voice just pounded at me with the same nagging question, to the point where I was thinking, “ENOUGH! We have to make this decision on our own!” God wouldn’t be equating faith to something as silly as buying a house, so this obviously is not God and I just need to concentrate! I took a couple breaths, Joel called, and he thought we should go ahead and buy the house.

Once the papers were signed, I felt an immediate relief and calm come over me. Instead of “oh crap, what did we just do”, I really felt like we were making the right decision. I just prayed for a buyer.

The open house was a flop. No one was coming. It was un-advertised, but still, would not even one person come? Then, one familiar-looking lady came to the door. She had been here a few months ago and was bringing some friends along to look at the house. She said she had been thinking about the house for weeks now, and this was “the one”. Today, I received a call from her and we are signing a purchase agreement tonight.

Could God have made the buyer come first so we didn’t have to make this choice? Yes. But I truly believe He used this situation for a reason; not only to “test” our faith, but He was also providing an opportunity for us to exercise our faith in His plan (2 Corinthians 13:5). And while it’s not always easy, He will in fact work all things together for good for those who love him (Romans 8:28). I believe we are being rewarded for listening to Him.

Now I know it’s a house; it’s not like we moved to Africa to help starving children or something. But it’s a pretty big step for this normally-cautious girl who has always had issues with handing control of her life over to God. I usually ask God to bless me where I’m at instead of meeting Him where He is. Think if we had let this house go, only to have a buyer come to our door minutes later. How upset and sad would we have been? How great is the reward for obedience? We would have settled on a different house – but as much as we have looked and looked, it would not have been as good as this one.

Is God waiting to bless your life in some way, if only you would listen to Him? He never promised this life would be easy – but He does promise that if we take up our crosses daily and follow Him, we will be rewarded eternally, and on this Earth.

Things could still go wrong – until we hand over the keys, we are not out of the woods. But I know it’s all going to be alright, because for once in my life, I chose to take a step of faith instead of settling for an outcome that I orchestrated. While most days my faith isn’t anything to brag about, we know that even with the tiniest faith of a mustard seed, we can move mountains. Or, in my case, I can move into the house God has prepared for my family.

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