Jill told me about a house she saw for sale. She said it was in a nice neighborhood but was probably out of our price range. We had been talking about buying or building a house but agreed it would be better after the baby was born. I guess we thought moving would be easier or safer then.
We decided on "Tilley" and started calling her by her name pretty early. Most people refer to an unborn baby as "the baby". Then after it is born, they give it a name. Tilley was Jill's maiden name.
It wouldn't hurt, we figured, to look at some houses just to have an idea of what we wanted. So I call the agent who listed the house Jill saw and set up to view a few houses. The second house we viewed was the one that would be out of our price range. We only looked at it to get ideas for when we might get serious about buying. As we finished touring the house, we stepped out the front door. That's when Jill said something I'll never forget:
"Whatever it takes, get me this house."
There is only one way to answer a statement like that. "Okay."
Jill has a knack for hearing God when I don't. I liked the house and all, but was content with the plan as it was. I didn't know what God had in mind for us and why it was so urgent that we up-size before baby Tilley was born. Of course, Jill didn't either. But she was so impressed with the house; she could see us raising our kids there.
The real estate agent was very pleased with herself when we told her we wanted to make an offer. But our house wasn't even on the market, and we were not able to afford two mortgage payments. So the purchase of this house was contingent upon the sale of our old house. As the Lord's timing is perfect, we had recently completed some upgrades and remodeling.
Once we had a solid contract in place, we listed our house with the same agent, with an exception; my business partner had expressed interest in buying our house as an investment. She put the "For Sale" sign in the yard.
Then the sellers received another offer which put us in the position of either backing down and letting the house go to another buyer or removing the contingency of selling our house. We had 24 hours to make our move. By this point, we were emotionally invested in the new home. We were able to list all the reasons why we should move, not the least of which was the fact that our house was on a very busy four lane road.
I was frantically trying to figure this out, but as I look back on it, I realize that God was driving this thing: not me. My partner bought our house right away, and we were back in the saddle.
Moving day was April 12, 1997. Jill was 8 1/2 moths pregnant with legs swollen so big she could barely walk. Family and friends came together to help us. The whole weekend was full of unpacking and trying to find everything. It was a crazy time for sure.
Then came Monday, and another phone call:
"We know you have your hands full,
but we have to call you because
Tucker has a new baby brother."
That's right. Riley was born, unknown to us, the day after we moved in to the new house.
This God—his way is perfect; the word of the LORD proves true;
he is a shield for all those who take refuge in him.
This is post # 24 of Forty Days. Learn more here.