I had looked at many houses; I had almost purchased two. I have friends who buy property a lot, and some who even go to browse this site to help them find out how to screen prospective tenants. That wasn't for me, though. Sleeplessness is a good sign that something's not quite right, a piece isn't quite in place.
My physiology is very in tune with my decisions, and this is both a blessing and a curse. I can feel - in the marrow of my bones - if the decision is right or wrong, if we are on the right path, if I've just said the wrong thing, if we need to flee immediately.
I just know that I know. And with two houses, and I knew that I knew: the answer is no.
"Let's look one more time."
And, naturally, this is when I happened onto the new dwelling of my family and my heart.
"I'll just give a quick call to the real estate broker," my realtor told me. "We'll see if there's any action on this house."
It had been on the market for 48 hours, there were four offers on the home, and they would make a decision at noon.
It was 11:30.
"So, do you want to make an offer?"
He knows where we will go. He knows when we will move.
"Yes. Yes, I do."
We drew up a verbal contract, a competitive offer that would make or break the sale. Whitney slipped away to make some phone calls on my behalf, and I slipped upstairs to what I hoped would be my master bedroom.
I lay prostrate on the floor, my face to the carpet, and I prayed every prayer of surrender, every verse of submission that came to my mind.
If our God is for us, who could ever stop us?
Whom shall I fear?
He knows where we will go, he knows when we will move.
Not my will, but yours.
Not my home, but yours.
I lay on the floor until I knew it was time, until I knew my heart was fearless and secure in what I know to be true.
As I walked down the stairs, my mom said, "Hey, Trish, remember how it felt the day you bought your wedding dress?"
(And so let me tell you about the day I bought my wedding dress. I went to a Make-a-Deal weekend at a bridal boutique in my home town; they were looking to clear out their inventory, so any bride could come and propose any reasonable offer for the dress she wanted.
I found the dress I wanted, but the price was far outside my range: $1,200. Even now, that number rattles me.
I could affored $700. So I made an offer.
They frowned. They raised their eyebrows at one another. They looked at the beadwork, the cathedral train, the price tag that so very much didn't match the number I had given them.
"I'm not sure," they said.
"We won't make any profit on this dress. What you are offering isn't above the cost of the dress," they said.
I stood on the fitting pedestal and looked into the mirrors surroundng me. "Okay, well, while you're deciding, I'm just going to keep it on. Because if you have to say no and I have to give this back, I want to know I wore it as long as I possibly could."
They met behind closed doors. They came back to me and said, "We think you need to get married in this dress. It's yours."
I cried. At the risk of mascara on the unblemished gown, I cried. But the beauty of it was this: the bridal consultants cried too. The purchase was meant to be; the dress was mine. And I never forgot that day.)
So when my mom asked if I remembered that day, if I remembered what it felt like, my mind did a quick game of connect-the-dots.
Offer. Deliberation. Approved. Mine.
"Oh! Oh! Did I just buy a house? Is that what just happened? Is this mine?"
Whitney, my realtor who is brilliant and carries a heart of gold, said with a smile, "They took your offer. They said your number will make the sale."
I folded in half, nearly onto the floor. And I cried. At the risk of getting mascara on their unblemished furniture, I cried. As reality settled into my hands, I cried more. And more. I spoke in unbroken, unfinished sentences.
"I get to..."
"I don't have to...."
"I won't have to..."
"It's going to..."
I get to start over.
I don't have to sleep in the room where my life fell apart.
I won't have to do this anymore.
I get to start over.
I get to change the course.
It's going to change.
I didn't realize how much oppression I had felt.
It's more than a business transaction. It's more than a title and deed. It's a new chapter. It is freedom.
It is life. It is ours.
"Whitney," is flattered by your graciousness, and finds this to be lovely; not because of what exists, what you've said, or what you perceive Her to be, but because of what WILL exist. She finds your graciousness to be a Character Quality that deserves Her attention and favor. Because it matters. Truly. Thanks for being a part of my Life's fibers. You matter to me.
I am SOOOOO happy for you and can't wait to see pictures of your new abode! I am a friend of your Mom's from Ohio Chapel days, although we now live in Charlotte, NC. I look forward to your wonderful posts daily .... And we are praying for such a bright and beautiful future for you!
Tricia, You Rock!!!!!
Hugs to you,
Sent from my iPad
I so understand this; this beautiful conversation of submission and faith and the peace-that-passeth-all. It was the same when we adopted our kids, when we got the call we were chosen. God bless your new home. Thanks for sharing your journey.
I am absolutely and completely overjoyed for you! A fresh start, a new beginning, it's fantastic!
Just think Tricia, you can move in, get settled, hang your pictures, and then head to the sunniest, prettiest beaches on the mainland.... nothing says "reward for hard labor" than a newly painted set of toenails in the sandy beaches of San Diego....at least that's what I always say. Looking forward to seeing you.
Is there anything but praise to God for this: For burdens lifted, for release, for new beginnings, for new hope, for newness of spirit, for redemption? What joy, what joy!
My heartiest congratulations! I know that 'you know when you know' feeling...and how hard it can be to share with others who don't have the same certainty. Keep knowing what you know, keep growing, and welcome to the Williford Family's new mission field!
My heart is touched by your story. I've been thinking about you a lot lately, and I'm thrilled to hear that you have found a home. May it be filled with peace, love, and knowing you, much laughter!
I love everything about this. So thrilled for you!
Congratulations! So thrilled for your new start!
This is beautiful. Your intuition is everything.
Also? I really enjoy reading about your journey. Thank you.
So beautiful. So happy for your fresh start. So deserved.
my spirit is soaring with yours ♥ so happy for you sweet girl !
And it's going to be wonderful and beautiful! Congratulations again, Tricia! The number was good. 🙂