When you think of being financially responsible, you think of not spending too much, paying your bills on time, even tithing and giving. But it's so much more than that. It's willing to allow God to demonstrate your responsibility. It's understanding management, but also making some very tough decisions.
I bought a house when I was 20. I had no idea what I was doing. The house was in pretty okay condition, just needed some updating. But still, I had no idea what I was doing. I was tired of going from place to place, of having no one place that was mine, that was home. So I decided to buy a house. I had no intention of getting married- my self esteem was too low to see myself as beautiful or desirable enough. I saw myself in this house, with children. I had planned to adopt.
But life changed. My heart became whole, and I saw myself as beautiful and desirable. God saw me as beautiful and desirable. And to my amazement, a very handsome man of God saw me as beautiful and desirable. And so we were married, and my home became our home. We were still too young and not financially wealthy enough to make the updates on the house. We kind of let it go and concentrated on more recent problems, such as jobs and infertility. We did well to manage money, pay bills, and keep afloat, but never enough to pay for remodeling.
The opportunity came and we decided we needed a change. We knew we couldn't sell the house, but we thought we'd rent it out, as we had the opportunity to move into a beautiful 4 bedroom, 2 1.2 bath home on land. We had hoped to rent it for awhile and eventually buy it, and eventually sell the other. We knew we should be making the repairs, but we kind of pushed it in the back of our minds. We pushed it in the back of our mind as we rented to family, as we rented to friends, and even when we hit the hard truth that the current house has too many problems that won't be able to fix inexpensively so we would eventually have to move again and not be able to buy this place. The hard truth made is weary, worried, and left the house not feeling like home. Even after painting the nursery in preparation for a baby- it lost that home feeling knowing that living here couldn't be forever. But we still weren't thinking about the long run with the other house.
But praying for financial wisdom and peace, God revealed to us what we need to do. Not that we can't afford the place we are in, but knowing we will have to eventually move and that some day, that house will eventually need sold, we made the decision to move back to the house. The cost of living there will also be less, and by following a strict budgeting plan, we will be able to save and update and remodel and make progress on the house. It's in rough condition and just needs a little love.
So we are making the move back to our house. To make it a home again, raise a family as we make the progress. As I sit around this house piled high with boxes, I try very hard not to the let the tears escape. It's a much smaller home. But we can't skip the steps- we have to make the repairs and get that house into selling condition. Get that house into family condition. Although part of me is sad to leave where I am because I hate change, part of me is catching a glimpse of excitement- to go back to the house I bought when I was too young. To fix it up, take ownership and pride in such a home. I pray that my heart will catch up to God's heart- that I'll see the beauty in that home once again. For us not living there in a few years, it's taken a beating. But it will be exciting to watch the house mold, shape, and change as my family grows inside of it.
We ask for prayer, for encouragement, for peace. And also perhaps a hand or two ;)