Last night Dave texted me that our offer on the house in Cleveland Heights had been accepted! We are thrilled! Our trip to Cleveland this weekend was wonderful. My parents watched Reuben so we enjoyed being able to talk and blast music as loud as we wanted on the drive there. We stayed with our fun and gracious friends Marc & Pam. Marc will actually be Dave’s new boss when we move to Cleveland so it’s been great getting to spend time with them. We enjoyed a date in Cleveland’s Little Italy where we enjoyed some of the best Chicken Marsala of our lives at Anthony’s. The somewhat surly waitress even brought us 4 small samples of their homemade gelato at the end of the meal “just to taste it!”
We looked at 15 houses during our trip with our awesome relator Scott. As we drove from house to house, we sang worship songs, thanking God for his goodness to us and reminding us of his ability to answer our prayers for a home. We felt so much joy and peace even though this should have been a stressful situation- especially with all the crap-hole homes we saw at first. Here is how Jesus answered our very specific prayers.
We prayed for a home in move-in condition- this house is freshly painted in colors we like, with newly refinished wood floors and a brand-new kitchen!
We prayed for a place that would be big enough to entertain people and practice hospitality. It is a house where we can have people stay with us, with a great big living room, connected to the dining room.
We prayed a prayer that we even felt slightly uncomfortable praying “Lord, we love nature it would be great to have a home with a view.” This felt like the cherry on top prayer, almost selfish to pray because really to even have a home is a gift. Yet, Jesus doesn’t just give us what we need he loves us enough to bless us even with things he knows will bring us delight. The house overlooks a beautiful ravine where we could hear water running and birds singing when we went in the backyard.
There is also a second-story balcony that overlooks the ravine which will be really nice to enjoy in the summer. It feels like a great writers/artists house- there is a lot to be inspired with just looking outside. Plus it will be great for Reuben to play in the ravine.
We prayed for a home that would be low-maintenance. The house has siding and a small yard which will be feasible to care for with our hectic summer travel schedule. We prayed for a home that would be close to parks, libraries, schools and stores and close enough for Dave to bike to Case Western. The public elementary school which gets good reviews is a block away. A city park with a pool is .5 miles away. The house is 5 miles away from campus.
We feel so grateful to God for hearing and answering our prayers. This whole time we were looking for a home I was reminded of this passage in the book of Matthew where Jesus is talking about prayer.
“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened. “Which of you, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him! So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.”
Funny that this scripture talks about knocking on doors when we were looking for a new home 🙂 I was so reminded that when we ask God for bread he doesn’t give us a stone. I know that this could get into complex theology about why prayers aren’t answered, how “doing unto others” relates to how we emulate God’s goodness to others, etc. But all I could think of was we prayed for what we wanted and he provided even more than what we prayed for. So rejoice with us as we thank God for this new home! We close on April 29th, take possession on the 30th and will likely move in mid-June.