As I wake this Hallmark holiday morning, when many will soon be celebrating “the one” who holds their heart, I lay still in the dark, reflecting on the love of my life. And my heart feels happily heavy.
My thoughts are on God. Because His outpouring of love on us, each His purposefully unique creation – when finally recognized – is overwhelming, life-transforming. No other love tastes so heavenly, fills so fully, or heals so completely. How can I know? I’ve chased it elsewhere and learned it the hard way.
So, as wonderful as my husband is, my thoughts turn first to my first love. Of course, I didn’t love him first. He first loved me. He wooed me, fought for me, persisted and didn’t give up. He let me go and waited patiently, but never disinterestedly, for me to return. Time and time again. And of course, before all that, he died to save me too. There’s no bigger thing.
In an hour or so, the sun will rise and we’ll spend another day frantically packing for our impending move. This last week was all packing and prepping and spending precious time with precious friends before the big farewell. I know. We’re only moving an hour’s drive away, but seeing loved ones here will be much harder and not nearly as frequent as I’d like.
It’s been an emotional week. Thinking of leaving behind my people, my community, saddens me deeply. The gorgeous souls that make up my church family, my neighborhood family, my school mamamiga family – will be missed infinitely more than the pretty townhouse and neighborhood that’s built wonderful memories, the old church that’s housed sweet fellowship and corporate worship, and the pristine school that’s taught our kids so well. I almost don’t want to leave.
But the lover of my soul has plans for us. Good and perfect plans. And they’re elsewhere, for now.
Our recent house hunt was intense, time-consuming, wearing. After months of daily searches and tours throughout So Cal, it seemed impossible to find the “right” home in the “right” neighborhood with the “right” schools at the “right” price. When I finally found an affordable house that felt “right” – smaller and older but bright, warm and inviting – someone else immediately snatched it up with an all-cash offer.
Another month later, when I’d just about given up, DH suggested we visit a couple more houses. On that final cross-county drive, I prayed once more – this time, with a heart that didn’t wish God would please hurry up and find us a home but that acknowledged His faithfulness and trustworthiness to provide when and how He deems “right.” Peace covered me immediately.
We found our house that very day. And it wasn’t even one of the listings we came down to check out. It was “a house around the corner” that our agent suggested last-minute.
For the first time, as soon as we walked in, I got that “this is IT” feeling. I prayed for confirmation.
But it was out of our price range.
Until DH did some calculations and figured out we had exactly enough liquidity to pay a 20% down and closing costs.
But the owner was already deep in negotiations with someone with a better offer than our bottom-line, below-list offer. So we waited…and waited some more.
Until the seller agreed to accept our offer instead. I know. It doesn’t make sense. ‘Til you figure God into the equation.
A few nights ago, DH, scratching his head, said to me, “Hey, I was looking through our old documents and guess what. Did you know that we closed on this townhouse on January 28, 2006? And we just closed on the new house on January 28, 2016? Exactly ten years later. On the dot. Funny, huh?”
Yup. Funny. ‘Cause God’s got a great sense of humor. Even in His infinite wisdom, His perfect timing, and His perfect planning. Coincidence? No. Providence. Romans 8:28. Look it up.
Happy Valentine’s Day, all. Be blessed and be hopeful. Someone, THE One, wants to shower you with good and perfect gifts.