Blessed Beyond What we Deserve!

As I sit here typing, it is almost seven p.m.  No big deal for me normally, being the night owl that I am.  But I’m exhausted at the moment.  Could probably fall asleep if I would let myself – and I won’t!  Knowing my luck, I’d fall asleep now, be wide awake at 3 a.m. and get my sleep/awake cycle completely fouled up! 

Why am I exhausted?  So glad you asked!!  Today has been a day of whirlwind activity that had me running from one “event” to the next.  But it was also a day that involved a decision for our church that was a very big deal to my family!

My day started at a little before 7:00 a.m. when I hit the snooze button yet again.  (I’m sure it wasn’t the first time since the alarm had been set for 6:30!)  I finally dragged my not-yet-fully-rested self from bed at about a 7:15.  My shopping trip of the night before (a couple hours on the road to Des Moines, four hours in a busy shopping mall and then home again) had caught up with me as I knew it would.  Don’t get me wrong – didn’t regret going for a moment since I got to spend the evening with some of my FAVORITE young ladies, but working your way through a shopping mall a week before Christmas is tiring work!

There I was, making cheesy potato casserole at 7:15 a.m. for the potluck at church.  The meal would be followed by a business meeting.  Today’s meeting was especially important to my family but more on that later!  Out the door by 8:35, heading to First Baptist; Sunday school and church then the potluck.  I ate a quick lunch then ran my two youngest to the Hawkeye Theatre (for the final performance of a show they were in this weekend) then back to the church for the business meeting.

Meeting was out by about 1 then it was home to finish getting food ready for our annual Open House!!  This is something my mom used to do each year when my dad was a Pastor.  It’s one of my favorite holiday memories from my high school years!  No agenda, lots of yummy finger foods (veggies, crackers and cheese, cookies, summer sausage, etc.) and tons of fellowship!  Open House from 3 – 5 or thereabouts and then clean-up which I finally completed at about 6:30.  Yep, tired.

Now about that business meeting I mentioned.  Remember, the one with the decision that was a big deal?!  Some background information – Since we moved to Fort Dodge almost two years ago, we’ve been renting a home that was, at the time we moved here, up for sale.  About a year and half ago, it was taken off the market.  The landlords have let us know that they intend to put the house back on the market sometime after the first of the year.  While we are grateful to have a place to live, it is not a house we would consider purchasing.  A few weeks ago, our church choir director (who is also a realtor) walked with us through a foreclosed home that is on the market.  It needs some cosmetic work and the kitchen needs a fairly complete overhaul.  But when I walked through it, I knew I was already falling in love with the house.  With the blessing of the realtor/choir director, our church treasurer, and the church moderator, my hubby wrote up a proposal that was presented to the Church Council (our leadership board) at their meeting the first Sunday in December.  Basically, it proposed that withdraw money from an account that was created when they sold the parsonage several years ago and had been used to take care of the Pastor’s housing allowance ever since.  They would then make a loan to us with which we would purchase the house.  All the questions about contract, contingency, etc. were asked and answered and the Council voted unanimously to take the issue to the church at the business meeting which was held today.  The church family was given an explanation of the proposal, they had a chance to ask questions and then hubby and I were excused so they could discuss and vote.  They voted unanimously to do just what we were asking.  Even as I type that last sentence it seems a little surreal.  We signed the paperwork tonight (lucky we’re such good friends with out realtor that he was at the Open House!) and the offer will be made either tomorrow or the day after.  Wow!  There is work to be done before we move in – aka the kitchen! – and absolutely nothing is packed so there’s quite a bit of work ahead of me.  But I’m so grateful that the wait on this end of things is over!

But the result of the vote wasn’t what REALLY blessed me.  It was the reaction of our church family to the whole situation that touched my heart.  One of the ladies in our church came up to hubby and I after the meeting, hugged us both and was “just thrilled” (her words) for us.  Others expressed their enthusiasm and excitement for us when they stopped at the house this afternoon.  A couple of them talked about the more “permanent” solution of home ownership vs. renting.  One even said she felt like we were making a statement about how long we intended to stay!  Rather than see the proposal as burdensome of even pushy on our part, they saw it as a chance to bless our family and were thrilled to have the chance to do so!  I am so grateful for my brothers and sisters at FBC and only wish I could find words to adequately express how I feel.  This has been just the most recent in a long string of incidents that keep proving to hubby and I over and over again that we are right where we are meant to be!

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