If you missed yesterday's post, Dreaming of a Farmhouse (part 1), read it before going on so you aren't confused!
Hubby and I were driving around town one afternoon, and we began discussing the HOA regulations of the neighborhood where we were planning to build...We'd already had some disappointments from their restrictions during our design process, so we were chatting about them again to make sure we didn't miss anything. I pulled the HOA guidelines up on their website, and we began reading through some of them...which lead to this:
"What!? I can't have chickens? What if I want to have chickens.
If I am moving to the country then I want to have chickens.
I guess it's not worth scratching everything we have done so far just because we can't have chickens."
Our conversation went on a little longer, and then we just decided we would deal with the regulations...
So really, it kinda came down to the chickens.
They really got the wheels in our minds turning, making us wonder if that lot was really where we wanted to be. We didn't want any guidelines telling us what we could or couldn't do on our acreage.
We wanted to move to the country, for goodness sakes. You're not supposed to have rules in the country.
But, it would take a lot more convincing for us to change all the plans we had been working on for months and months and months...God knew that.
Less than a week later we received a letter in the mail from a realtor.
She mentioned that she had some clients looking for a lot in our neighborhood and asked if ours was for sale. I can still remember this moment so perfectly... Hubby and I looked at each, rather in shock, and laughing, and we both said, "Well, that would be crazy." And 30 minutes later Hubs was online looking to see if there was anywhere else we might want to live. Seriously.
God sure knew how to get our attention!
We kept saying how crazy it was and I couldn't wrap my mind around the fact that we had just designed our dream house, spent hours and hours, and lots of dollars on those plans. It didn't really make sense to me. At all.
The next morning, I opened an e-mail from the Hubs - He had sent me three listings in the area we'd been looking, and asked if any of them appealed to me. I immediately nixed 2 of the 3 - but said I would be willing to look at the remaining option,"but we better look quick so we can make a decision."
That Sunday we called and called and called their realtor who never responded, (come to find out he was at a conference out of state) so we just drove on over to take a looksie, & hoped the sellers would be home so we could have a tour.They were. And as we walked through the house, we began to see the amazing similarities between the layout of this Farmhouse with the house we had just designed. All of the rooms on the main floor were in the same places we had drawn them in our plans. Crazy.
And even though it had been built a long time ago, it still had a huge pantry, a wet bar, a mudroom, and a place for each of us to have an office, which were important elements in the other design. The rooms needed lots of updating, but the bones of the house were excellent.
We walked around the property and the trees were amazing. Trees were high on our priority list-The property specifically had huge Pecans - They're my fav. Also, Hubby had been planning on building a barn and he'd nailed down the exact amount of square footage that he needed. The barn on this property was the exact. same. size. What?!?! And it had an additional horse barn -- That would absolutely be perfect for a chicken coop. Yippee! We could have chickens here! And it isn't in a neighborhood, so we don't have HOA restrictions. Awesome. Both of us could totally see our family living here... but after we left, I still had some doubts and fears about scrapping Plan 1, selling our lot and scrapping our dream house plans, to move on to Plan 2.
I woke up the next morning with so much peace, and heard God speaking to my heart, asking me if I was willing to give up my plans for His plans. I cried a lot that day.
It was a spiritual struggle of wanting what I thought what was best verses what God was calling us to.
I have seen over and over throughout my life how God's plan is always better than anything I could dream or imagine, and I knew that, and I trust Him, but that was still a hard day. One of Hubby's most wonderful traits is that he doesn't struggle with fears. If God calls him to it, he goes. So while I was doubting, God used him to continue to speak truths to me. I handed over my plans and dreams to the Lord, and knew that He would carry us to where we needed to be. I drove to the Farmhouse the next day with one of my dearest friends, who had been a prayer warrior for us during this time. We left a note on the porch telling the sellers we were ready to make an offer.
God continued to work out all of the details, as He always does.
Our lot sold just in time for us to close on the Farmhouse, and renovations began soon after. It's been a crazy few months, and Phase 1 of the renovations ended on Saturday. I have lots and lots of before and after pics to share with you, which I will be doing soon! I would've loved to share them throughout Phase 1, but life was too crazy. Stick around to see what else we have in store because once Phase 2 begins, pics will be added weekly.
Throughout the last few months God has graciously revealed to me that this house had everything and more than we had designed, and it was the house He had intended to give us from the beginning. Had we not walked through the design process, we wouldn't have realized what a perfect fit this house was for our family. He even lead us to a lot that would be easily sold, just in time for us to purchase the Farmhouse. He was giving us what we had prayed for all along, and He has big plans for this place. Our prayer from the very, very beginning was that He would be glorified in our new home and that everyone who walks through the front door will leave knowing the love of Christ.
That He would use this house for His plans and for His glory.
This isn't really our Farmhouse, it's His.
An amazing gift from God, that we are blessed to call our home.
Somewhere during the craziness of selling and buying, our precious son walked up to me and said:
"So we sold the brown house (1st house), then moved to the small house (rental),
and then we are buying the white house, and Daddy is going to build me
a treehouse, and sissie a playhouse, and a long time after that we
will all go to God's house."
Just one more confirmation that this was all a part of God's plan!