God is funny. REALLY funny. I've said it for years, and I grow more convinced of it as time goes by and I see more and more really funny things that He does. I really think He likes to laugh, and likes to make us laugh. Why, even the Bible is full of funny things God does. The first example I can think of offhand is Genesis 11, where the people are building a tower to heaven. Verse 5 cracks me up every time: "The Lord came down to see the tower..." (If you don't see the joke in that, think on it a little while...)
Anyhow. Now that I've spent the weekend looking at homes for sale, I'm really wondering what on earth took mine so long to sell. I can't believe the condition people try to sell their homes in. After about the tenth house, I was getting really discouraged -- here I was leaving a beautiful move-in-ready home where everything is in good condition and now I was going to end up having to buy and fix up someone else's mess? Not pleased.
I wasn't really sure what to do. I had just about exhausted the entire list of possibilities, and nothing was even close to being suitable, except for one house which I absolutely loved, and was in great shape, except for standing water in the crawlspace... an issue which the realtor was quite certain was going to require expensive repairs.
And then we entered the next to last house on the list. It was 12:30 Saturday afternoon. The moment we set foot in the door, we said somewhat hesitantly, "This one looks promising so far..." We kept waiting for the huge glaring problem to show up around every corner but it never did. It was beautiful. Carpets looked new. Hardwood floors shone. Paint was lovely. Bathroom was clean and fixtures nice. Kitchen was outstandingly gorgeous, with brand new stainless steel appliances. Nice-sized yard, fenced, and FLAT. (The issue with my house was that the yard was too steep (hello, people, this IS the mountains, what do you expect?) so a flat yard was very very nice to see.)
I needed no time to think it over. I was ready to make my offer. The thing is, the house was new on the market and was already underpriced as it was, in our opinion, anyway. So despite it being a "buyer's market" these days, I was hesitant to lowball them. I offered $8K under list price, hoping to meet somewhere in the middle, though I was willing to pay list price if necessary to get this house.
I went to my grandmother's after doing all the paperwork, while I waited to hear back on the house. The realtor I used was my pastor's son. But apparently he didn't mention to his father that I'd called him and we were going out house-hunting. Because when I showed my grandmother the pictures I'd taken of this house, and I told her who my realtor was, she was shocked.
"Why, Pastor So and So was just here earlier today visiting me," she answered. "And he asked me if I had anything special I wanted to pray about, and I said no, you'd sold your house this week so that prayer had been answered. So then he said, "Well, then, we'll just pray that she finds a home here very soon so she can get moved back."
Remember, neither of them knew I was out looking at houses.
I asked my grandmother, "About what time was that?" "12:30," she replies.
Now that's funny. After a long discouraging morning of nothing but bad houses, they pray for me to find one soon and at that very minute, I'm entering my House of Dreams with none other but that very pastor's son?
See what I mean about God's sense of humor? :)
So anyhow... it was a long day. A long night. A long next morning. No word at all from the sellers. What on earth was going on? Why would they take so long to respond? Their deadline was supposed to be noon Sunday.
At 1 pm, my realtor called to say he'd phoned to find out what was going on, and was told that they had two more showings scheduled the next day so they were going to wait on those to respond. Oh, great! Keep in mind that every other house in the price range, we SAW, and they were in dreadful shape... so there was a very strong possibility that at least one of these two showings would bite... and then we'd be in a bidding war. Nooooo!!!
I have no idea how he did it (God did it, I guess!) but he convinced them to give an answer now. He was told that they would, but they'd probably be sticking pretty tight to their price.
An hour later he called again, with their counter. Their offer was $2K above my offer -- $6K below their list price. !!!! That was better than I'd even hoped to negotiate them down to, and keep in mind, I said we thought the house was underpriced as it was! I almost feel like I'm stealing this awesome house!!!
Oh, but the coincidences aren't done yet. I had my dad come over to look at it. There is a gorgeous mirror in the entryway, an enormous wooden mirror, with ornate carvings. (And it's staying!!) My dad took one look at that mirror, and said, "Whose house is this?"
"I don't know," replied my realtor. "Whose do you think it is?" My dad responded with the name of his former boss, and the realtor looked on the desk in the office and sure enough, there was that man's name written on a paper.
How did he know? Because that mirror came out of the old high school building, and my dad had helped him refinish it! Now how cool is that?
Little Girl is very very pleased, to say the least, and my brother says that when he heard I was hoping to get a house in one of two neighborhoods, that Baby Boy was voting for the one I ended up in. Why? That subdivision has its own pool. ;) Baby Boy and Little Girl will both be very happy about that this summer.
And all the details worked out perfectly so I can move straight from this house to that one without having to deal with storage in between.
This whole thing is totally God. How could it not be? Things don't just all fall into place perfectly like that any other way!
What a very Merry Christmas it is for me! :)