This has been quite the journey.
There are so many words to be said and stories to be told about God's grace, mercy and how when we allow him to direct our steps we end up better off than we ever expected to be. I have known all along that there were reasons for the delays. I knew it and yet I struggled daily with it. Tears, frustration and anxiety; I thought I had this entire relocation planned out and yet was powerless and completely not in control of any of it. I couldn't force our home in NJ to sell no matter how much curb and interior appeal we gave it. Yet, in the time it took to sell my husband was able to transition into a work from home position within the company he has dedicated himself to for the past 10 years.
In my plan, he was coming to TN jobless and we were going to "figure it out". But God's plan is far better than our own. He not only provided a job, but a job that affords him the ability to be home 24/7 since the travel required for my job grew exponentially this year. The comfort of two incomes without the push and pull of who puts their job 2nd place to family needs.
The dream in my heart was to find a farmhouse on multiple acres in Franklin. But it wasn't happening and anything that was available was so far out of our reach price wise it was discouraging. Depressing, really. I knew in my heart that God wouldn't have brought me to Franklin knowing I would fall in love with it and not be able to afford living here. God doesn't play games like that. I never asked the relocation company to move me to Franklin last year when this whole journey began.
In my plan, my corporate housing was to be in the same town my office is. About 37 miles from Franklin. But at the time of my relocation they came back to me and said the only options available for my housing were all in Franklin. I was disappointed. I didn't want to commute so far to my office. But I went with it. I was powerless and not in control of it. God knew better. He knew I would fall in love with Franklin and that this town would end up feeling more like home to me than the hometown I grew up in and spent the past 10 years of my living in.
Instead of putting complete trust and resting in knowing that he was directing this journey, I began to look at houses that were not part of my dream. Houses that I could afford but were less than what we were really searching for. I was ready to settle and open to making a less than option work for us so we would hit some of our wish list, live in Franklin and stay within our budget.
But Friends, we don't serve a less than God. In my fear and on my timetable I forgot that.
We put an offer in on a nice flip house on a solid acre here in Franklin. The interior was stunning and all the finishes were gorgeous. The lot size was great. But it was a split level style which I do not care for and frankly, I thought the front façade of the house was ugly as sin. But the pros outweighed the cons on this one so we went for it. We got into multiple offers and did not get the house. I was ok with it because I knew I was settling. What I wasn't ok with was the feeling that we were never going to find what we came here searching for.
The next morning I felt like I was at rock bottom. I got in the car alone to run errands and decided to drive through Leiper's Fork, my very favorite part of Franklin. The area is so lovely and my heart aches when I drive there like my heart used to ache at the thought of someday living in Tennessee. I wept openly in the car that afternoon crying out to God that I couldn't see a way we could ever afford to live out there but oh, how I long to! Leiper's Fork embodies everything I dreamed I would find moving here. It was the first place I showed Charlie when he came out here in November and after spending a morning driving through those winding country roads he too agreed that living out in Leiper's would be a dream come true.
It should really come as no surprise that within 2 weeks an 8.5 acre farm in Leiper's Fork came on the market. I had driven home for the weekend to see Charlie and we were together scrolling through realtor.com the morning the listing went live. Charlie was the one who noticed it was in Leiper's Fork. This house was actually on the market last October when I got out here but I didn't go look at it because the price was much higher and my heart wasn't set on living in Franklin at the time. They pulled it off the market before the holidays and happened to relist it when we were in a position to actually put in an offer on it. I went to see it last Monday, put an offer in on Tuesday and by Wednesday we heard that it was ours. It has the cute rustic farmhouse feel I was looking for, a sweet metal roof, a barn and a view to die for. And all the land we were hoping for.
I told you we don't serve a less than God.
When I got the call that we got the house I was in Memphis for work. I haven't been to Memphis since 2013 and the day the call came was my first day there since then. It was two back to back trips to Memphis in 2012 and 2013 that started this whole dream of moving south to Tennessee. I spent the trip in 2013 with a nagging in my gut that there was a divine reason I was back in Memphis. I had no idea what it was, but I knew there was some reason I was there twice in a row. I flew home and remember telling my family how odd it was that I felt so strongly that the trip had a purpose beyond what I could see or knew. I didn't know what that purpose was or would be and I wouldn't find out until 3 years later when it all came full circle.
This realization reduced me to tears as I drove to my hotel that evening. Sweet, happy tears of awe over God's goodness and faithfulness. He is so good y'all. Throughout this whole journey I have told my children that if nothing else, I want them to walk into this next chapter of our lives having clearly seen God's faithfulness in bringing to pass those dreams he has placed in our hearts.
So without further ado, here are some pictures of our soon~to~be sweet farm from the MLS listing.
"But as for me, it is good to be near God. I have made the Sovereign Lord my refuge; I will tell of all your deeds." ~Psalm 73