I've been anxiously awaiting the perfect time to tell an amazing cool story of God's goodness!
Let's start back in May 2013, I find out I got the job at CCS. In August of 2013 I got a wonderful bundle of precious 5th and 6th grade kids to love on/teach Bible, Language Arts and History to! One of these students is Megan Gallagher. And that's where the story begins...
After the school year was over, Heather Gallagher, her momma, asked me to watch the Gallagher kids (there are four of them:)) throughout the summer. I gladly accepted. We had some fun adventures together last summer. Then August came, and they found out Jeff and the family were on the list to transfer to Canada for his job. They called us to see if Kalen and I would like to live in their home if they actually accepted the deal for free (except for utilities). And of course, there was no question about it in our minds! But, we tried to not get too excited because plans were not finalized yet and I've had my fair share of disappointment with house situations.
Let us rewind for a minute and talk about the house disappointment. In the spring of 2014. Kalen and I were ready to get out of our apartment. We began looking for a house to purchase. Our Apartment contract was about to be up in March, so we needed to find a house FAST. For about a month, Kalen and I were looking. We found this adorable house that I loved. The walls were even painted my favorite color (teal)! I just KNEW it had to be our house. Kalen, my stable husband - of course was praying and not finding peace. I fearfully (lesson: FEAR is never a good motivation) kept pressing the issue. We were at the point of almost putting a contract on the house and BOOM. God shut the door. God said no. For circumstances beyond our control (Kalen just switched positions at his job from an employee to a contractor - which makes a big difference in the mortgage rules for some reason). We needed 2 years of experience in Kalen's new position to show the mortgage company that he made enough.
So, God had shut the door and said no. We were in our apartment for who knows how much longer. We prayed together about how long to set our contract, and Kalen and I were both peaceful about December 2014. Not knowing where we were going to go or what we were going to do. I had a real hard time accepting this no, because in my heart, the enemy was telling me "you're not worthy of God's YES", "God likes saying no to you"... blah blah blah. But because of the gracious goodness of my husband; he prayed over me, and settled my heart in the truth of Christ's love no MATTER what the circumstances.
I read in a devotion a few days later this quote -
"When God says no, it's because He's got something greater"
... I knew in my BRAIN that this had some truth in it.
But not until this (What I'm about to tell you) happened, did I truly believe that quote IN MY HEART!
Heather Gallagher and I and the house
This past fall, Heather calls me and lets me know that it's officially a done deal. They are moving to Canada in December (the exact month our lease was up - definitely not a coincidence!) and the house is ours for 2 and a half years! Rent Free, all we have to pay is utilities.
At that moment, my heart seemed to skip a beat. And I was reminded of that quote;
"When God says no, it's because He's got something greater"
It was a worshipful, and even repentant moment for me. Because I had been very doubtful of God's love towards me because of the seemingly constant "no's" we'd been receiving. I knew at that moment that God knew what was going to happen not even a year later! And He said no because He wanted us here! He had a plan, He guided our steps.
So, December came around and we found ourselves moving into this beautiful, four bedroom home. The first time we walked into the empty home (only with a few tables, chairs, mirrors and wall hangers and a huge T.V. left), a gift from the Gallaghers was sitting in the kitchen. It was a "Welcome to your new home" card and a gift. HOW sweet is this? Not only do we get to stay in this house for 2.5 years, the owners have given us freedom to make the home "ours". Heather kept telling me, "You can paint the walls, you can do whatever you want! We want you to feel like this is YOUR home!" This is a gift of grace from this beautiful family. So, thanks be to God for the generosity of the Gallagher family, and most importantly, thank you God that through my doubting, fear and anxiety - YOU pulled through and did what only YOU can do. And still loved me through it all... God is gracious.
Here's some pictures of the move:
Our super moving crew! We actually had a blast moving in! Heather was able to help us settle in as well which was great!
And now unto a virtual tour of the house:
The beautiful dining room. The Gallagher's left their dining room table for us, which has already been such a blessing!
I love the open windows and the beautiful trees out front!
Back to dining room: I LOVE our new cabinet. I found this beauty at an antique shop in Tomball.
Welcome from our little family
One of my favorite walls. I found the sticker on sale at Hobby Lobby.
The kitchen. The Gallaghers also left their breakfast table and let me paint their chairs to match my red flowers!
I love this little nook.
The open kitchen; I love the blacksplash that Jeff put in! And the granite is gorgeous!
Now onto our bedroom. Heather had painted the walls already - and it fit just perfectly with our new bedroom look. Kalen and I were graciously given most all of our furniture when we got married (which I'm sure is the case for most of the poor newlyweds like us out there). So I had never gotten the opportunity to build a room from the ground up. Except here, in this room. Kalen gave me a nice budget to design our room and let me go at it. It was so much fun and I can't believe how it came together. Since I got saved, I've always wanted a place to have a quiet time, away from the distractions of the world. And low and behold, the Gallagher's master bedroom had a perfect little area to make my dream come true. I remember when I found that lounge chair at Marshall's, I called Kalen and had to sell him on the importance of having this chair! He let me purchase it, and that night I could barely sleep. The sheer joy of knowing that so many memories with Jesus were going to be made in this chair, and of course it is SO cute and comfy. Kalen likes to play his guitar here as well. It has served a beautiful, worshipful purpose this little area and we love it! (P.S. - Do you see the vines outside? GORGEOUS!)
And here is a our bed! I found the wood side tables at Tuesday Morning on sale (40 dollars each) because they were all scuffed up. Heather had left over yellow chalk paint and let me chalk paint them. It was PERFECT and I love the look with the new white furniture. I found the love sign at Hobby Lobby, the pillows at Marshalls, and the quilt on sale at Macy's on Black Friday. I had so much fun putting it together, and the sweet thing is Kalen loves it too which is every wife's dream - that you both can enjoy the bedroom.
The pillow says "Let's stay home and cuddle" - our marriage moto hehe
Other side of the room.
Now back out into the Living Room!
Kalen also let me change up the colors for our living room. It's amazing what happens when you just get new pillows and a rug! I LOVE these colors together!
Fun little display with my favorite Hobby Lobby sign.
View from the top of the stairs. (The Gallaghers DID leave their TV. Dangerous!) ;)
The study downstairs. We finally have a place to display our books, and there's still extra room! Blows my mind! I thought we had a library in our little apartment!
Upstairs game room - we put our kitchen table here. It's been real useful and fun for games upstairs and my arts and crafts projects!
Annie's old room with our old bedroom furniture! Yes, the bed is so high, Kalen built it! Lol
I love this little reminder. :) Thanks Altar'd State.
This room was harder to pull together. You'll notice the box spring is on the floor, somehow we lost Kalen's Bed Frame - Oh well! Now we have options, you can take the bedroom with the high bed, or the low bed! LOL
Back downstairs, we can't forget Neila's little corner right by the back door!
NEILA LOVES having a backyard!!!
And Kalen finally has a garage, to park a car you ask? NOPE... To work out! He's in his happy place. :)
Well, thank you for touring our new home for 2.5 years with us! We are so grateful to the good Lord and the precious Gallagher family. I hope and pray you find encouragement through this post. God is good. and His gifts aren't always beautiful things like new homes and stuff, but answering our prayers with the answer no. For His guidance and grace is the best gift we have. And He truly does know best - He sees the future - He is our guardian and protector. And for that I am thankful that He said no a year ago, so that we could say YES to this place.