Thursday, November 20, 2008

Our house

Some of you have asked about us having our house for sale...

We began building our home about four years ago. We were careful in picking a lot and plan to a home that would grow with our growing family. Currently we were living an hour away from our family, our church, and my husband's work. It was a three bedroom, 1100 square foot home. No basement, no garage, no storage. I was expecting baby #4. And admittedly, we were a little feverish...with house fever that is.

While building our budget was stretched and stretched a little more.

We had been in the house for about three months when I felt really convicted. I had been struggling for some time because I knew that we had not thoroughly prayed through our move. I mean we had prayed for the house to get done when I gave birth to our fourth child and we were living in my mom's basement because our house had sold three months prior. And we had praised God when it was finished. But when we began the process, we never actually sought God over whether or not we should build this new house. After all, He might have said no.

At the time I was in a bible study at church called "When God Speaks" by Priscilla Shire and it was all about diserning the voice of God. I was beginning a new prayer journal and was down on my knees. It was at this moment that I knew I had to ask for forgiveness and hand my house over to God. We built this house to raise our children in, but I knew if it wasn't God's will that we raise our children in it, then I had to be okay with that and trust him. Suddenly, my daughter who was four at the time woke up from a nap she was taking on the couch behind me. Sleepily, she looked at me on the floor and said, "Mommy, I love our new house." I smiled and asked her why. "Because Jesus built it," she said. I felt like God was telling me that we would struggle, but we would keep the house.

Fast forward to January 2007. Almost 2 years ago we had a significant loss of monthly income. Our home is our only source of debt, but the high payment was weighing down on us. We had struggled before, but there was no way we could make the numbers work now. Our income was significantly less than our outgo. We prayed and prayed and kept feeling as though God was saying, "Wait."

So we waited and each month we somehow made it. We would have anonymous monetary gifts, huge bonuses and such. But over the summer it became worse and after much prayer decided it was time to put our house on the market. As you know, this is bad time to try to sell a house...oh, that's a gross understatement...houses aren't selling now. It's been over a year with nothing.

I truly thought that when we put our house on the market we would sell, downsize in mortgage, and God would save us from this situation that way. It was desperately hard to let go of the house, but we were willing. I still think it was God's will to put the house on the market, but I now wonder if it is God's will that we actually sell it. We've had some really rough months, but God has continually provided. Rarely has he provided in ways that I wanted Him to provide, but He has and I'm grateful. We will keep the house on the market until it either sells or our income increases enough that we have enough monthly income to afford it. At this point, either of those situations would be miraculous.

God gave me a scripture when this situation first began. It is Isaiah 13:14.

"From now on when your son asks you, 'What does this mean?' you will answer, 'With his great power, the Lord brought us out of Egypt, the land where we were slaves."

I know that we have been enslaved to a mortgage that we cannot afford because of our own ignorant decisions. I believe that one way or another God will bring us out of it and our testimony will be stronger because of it. In the meantime as the psalmist says...

"I am worn out calling for help; my throat is parched. My eyes fail, looking for my God." -Psalm 69:3

I would appreciate any prayers you may utter on our behalf. Pin It Now!


  1. Shanna, I know the feeling of regret over past monetary mistakes. Your post moved me to tears. Keep trusting in Him. He is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all we ask or even think.


  2. (((((((((Hugs))))))))))

    I have been here and oh, who am I kidding, I AM here. We're going through this Dave Ramsey seminar and it is downright comical.....we're supposed to make our budget so that we end up with a zero balance each month, being sure to allocate each penny somewhere. I don't have any problem allocating the pennies. I have problems on paper because there aren't enough pennies to spread where needed. And yet, it only bothers me on paper. God has always provided. Even the extras. I know what you mean....I don't want to be irresponsible or a poor steward and I beat myself up when I am extravagant on something (I bought Reese's Pieces today, shhhh!) and yet God STILL makes things work out.

    I'm praying with you! And each time I lift our finances up, I"ll be sure to lift yours as well!

  3. You ladies are so sweet. Thank you, thank you for your prayers!

  4. Wow....we went through SUCH a similar situation....but after being on the market for 18 months ...(which BTW...girl I'm praying for YOU on that one! Keeping a house 'show' clean with 3 little ones was enough to make me feel LOONY!)
    But I digress....
    We took our house OFF the market last October...and as the last person commented, there are NO pennies to go around...but we haven't missed a mortgage and we're NOT going into debt further. I have new admiration for the vegetables at the 99cent store....and I'm getting SUPER creative with soups!
    But the best thing is..we feel closer in our marriage than ever before because we have this common struggle to fight be ingenious with our funds, to cheer each other on when I want to cry over STILL not having any money to buy this or that...or to repair things when they break! And that alone is a miracle because when we were on the market we often quarreled about the lamest decisions.
    I can actually say I feel closer to God in this trial. I keep trying to picture myself as a missionary in the fields of a far away land...and I think of all the things they are grateful for...and it gives me perspective.
    We can't worry about has enough trouble of it's own! But in the end our Daddy is here...fully in control and walking it with us, I just stopped wondering Why? all the time, and actually started enjoying the daily miracles of our survival. Sorry to ramble, but my heart hurts with you and I'm praying for you dear sister!



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