There are seasons in life where things feel pretty predictable and then everything turns upside down and you realize, as you are tearing down a surprising path at mock eight, that before you had only been on the slow uphill climb of a roller coaster. Holding on is all you can think of, because the adventure just got real.
Sometime this past summer, my husband had a co-worker transfer from Missoula, MT three hours away to an office just outside of Bozeman. Jake had just been there for business and remarked that he couldn’t shake the feeling every time he drove into town that it felt like home. As he had been saying things like this for 3 years, I suggested we explore whether it was God’s will for us to move. I kinda hate open files and Missoula always felt temporary to us, so the uncertainty of where we were to be was getting old. I called his co worker on the spot (who was driving a moving truck at the moment) and asked how they knew, how they planned, etc. To my surprise, they just picked up and went.
Then things got crazy. As I was coming downstairs someone was knocking on the door of our little house. It was a realtor, asking if we might be interested in listing. Surprised, I said, “no” but as I went to tell Jake how bizarre it was that a realtor had just been at our door, it hit me, maybe this was a “God-thing.” So I opened the front door again to step outside. This time my neighbor, a mortgage broker who was working in her yard, hollers over, “Hey, don’t list your house with her, I may be interested in buying it.” This was just too much to be a coincidence in my book, so Sunday we drove to Bozeman, were able to stay at a lovely inn, meet a mortgage broker getting pre-approved, find a realtor, view houses, visit the fencing (sport) club, interview at Petra Academy, a private school for our kiddo, and return home Tuesday…with no pre-planning. Bozeman was definitely not a “closed-door.”
I updated pictures of our house on Zillow, and without officially listing it, we had a lot of interest right away; agents emailing us that they had clients who wanted to see it and would we consider a finder’s fee, etc. We ended up listing with a friend, and selling to a cash buyer who needed us to be out within 3 weeks.
The craziness included Bozeman’s hot housing market, in which one could make a full price offer remotely on a place that had been listed for mere hours and still not get it because of multiple offers coming in. Bottom line? We had to sell our place without having any idea of where we would end up: house? apartment? condo? car? homeless? I don’t wish that kind of stress on anyone, as it makes packing a nightmare. But we did discover a unique system that was very helpful. Perhaps a future post about how to move when you don’t know where you are going or how long it will take to get there would be in order?
It turned out that IF you could find a house, appraisers were booked out 60 days and livable apartments just about as far, so our week long stay with relatives turned into 2 months. If they were knighted “Saints of Hospitality” it wouldn’t be overstated…at all. Miraculously, we saw a brand new home pop up as an open house. We stopped by, and I teared up as it was the first house I had seen that had the exact sparkling quartz counter tops on my dream list. Learning that it may come back on the market as the sale was falling apart, I scarcely dared hope that things could work out for us to live here. But God’s goodness exceeded our wildest expectations, and the day we were scheduled to sign a lease on a microscopic apartment, instead we submitted an offer on our lovely new home. God blessed us with a home for the holidays, and every day my heart overflows with gratitude for his provision. Hope you enjoy the photo tour!
Inspirational Scripture: “He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will abide in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say to the Lord, “My refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.” Psalm 91:1-2 ESV