It's easy to focus on all the things we want or think we need; " If only" becomes our mantra. If left unchecked, we can fall prey to the endless trap of discontent. This blog is from a very special person in my life! I hope she inspires you as she has inspired me. My prayer for you this Christmas, is that you may know His peace, His presence, His love.
Shortly after my husband and I were married we had to have the discussion that all couples do about finances. The awkward dance of two people with two sets of spending habits combining their incomes and agreeing to one way of doing things. There were growing pains as I tend to be more conservative while my husband is more relaxed. But in time we found a wonderful harmony the our two approaches coming together. This process was much easier with Rave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University principals guiding us. Paying off debt and meeting goals was a challenge that both of us got excited about. At the time we were living in a cozy (code for super small) one bedroom apartment. Our appartement complex was older which provided rent which was very affordable on our income and made it possible for us to focus on our financial goals.
Within our first year of marriage we were able to pay off all of our debt, which wasn’t much but added up in the end. We were living debt free which felt fantastic! We decided it was time to start saving for a house so that we could eventually grow our family. Shortly after we started saving an opportunity was put before us. A small two bedroom home went up for sale around the corner from my in laws. It was a modest home built in the 1940s with, incredibly, only two previous owners. It’s esthetic was dated but the house was well built and well taken care of. We prayed and felt the Lord was telling us to move forward with this home.
We were so excited as we closed on our first home together knowing that our mortgage was actually cheaper than what we were paying for rent. We started right away at making updates to our home before we moved in. The house became even more of a blessing as we found out a month after we moved in that we were expecting our first child.
We rushed to remodel the spare bedroom and bathroom before my due date. All my time of watching fixer upper were fiannly put to the test as I got to live in my real life fixer upper. My husband and father in law did all the work themselves and it saved us a considerable amount of money.
Somewhere between the time my daughter was born and the years that followed I did something that many of us do. I looked up. I looked around at my peers and saw the level of living they had attained. Suddenly our little fixer upper was not the dream home I had moved in to a few years prior. For the first time I realized what we were doing was not the norm. I looked as other young families moved into big beautiful homes with furnishings that were not hand me downs and thrift store finds. Suddenly our little home did not feel enough.
My thoughts started shifting to the idea that someday I will have my dream home with room to grow and decorated with brand new furnishings. I started looking at our lived in home with a critical eye with everything that is wrong with it.
But, God reminded me of some truths that changed my view of how I look at our home and any place we may choose to reside in the future. This earth is not our home, our home is in heaven and I cannot get caught up with my earthly possessions. I was reminded of the goals that we set as a newly married couple to live debt free. Because of this house we have been able to maintain those same principals and save our money so that we can bless others as well as create a solid financial foundation. This house has given me the opportunity to be a stay at home mom which has been a personal conviction and calling of mine since I was young. We have always prayed that our home would be a place where the Holy Spirit resided and a place for people to gather. Since we moved in we have been able to host several church and youth events. In short this house has been a blessing.
So here in the last months I have given up my idea of my dream home, and decided to let joy and contentment take its place. I may never have a quaint farm house with an interior that makes Joanna Gains cry. What I have will be built on the principals that we feel God has called us to, which is to live with an eternal mind set, and be the best stewards of what He has given. And that’s good enough for me.