I've never posted a serious prayer request on my blog before. Yeah, I've asked things like, "if you happen to think of us, please send up a prayer on our behalf." or "Please remember us in prayer, if you think about us." But I've never come right out and entered a post directly asking for prayer from folks I've never actually met in person.
However, after a phone conversation with my husband last night, I am feeling absolutely discouraged, overwhelmed and defeated. Our family has been struggling with an issue for over a year. I'm not sure I'm reading the reactions of others correctly (I sincerely hope that I am misreading them), but I often feel that they think our situation is really, "no big deal".
Prior to accepting Jesus Christ as my saviour, I am ashamed to confess that I lived a lot of life ... a lot of very sinful life. Sometimes I think that those who know me personally and know my testimony, think that because of my past I am invincible or that I would be able to handle anything. After all, if I could survive all the ungodly choices I made in my "old" life, then I must be one pretty tough cookie, right? The reality is that my old life was literally killing me and my family. I wasn't surviving it, I was slowing and painfully dying and taking those I loved and cared about the most with me.
Upon acceptance of Jesus Christ was I was literally transformed into a new person, like 2 Corinthians 5:17 states. I was no longer a victim of my ungodly choices, nor was I a survivor of the consequences of the ungodly choices I'd made. No, Jesus Christ brought me into victory over my past. And my old life has passed away and I've become a new creature in Christ. However, this doesn't make me invincible. Just like everyone else in the world I am still susceptible to the "beatings" our fallen world dishes out to each and everyone of us - Christian or non-Christian. The difference between me, a Christian, and the non-Christian, is that I have a hope in Christ Jesus. When everything in the world tells me it's a "lost cause", God tells me that He has a plan (Jeremiah 29:11) and I have hope in Him (Michah 7: 8-9).
Today, I ask you all to earnestly agree with me in prayer that the Lord will open the doors that need to be opened for our family to find a home that not only suits our needs and desires but also is within our budget. I know some of you out there may think that we are just being too picky. Please indulge me while I try to expound upon the housing market where my husband works. He is in a area that is in the midst of an employment boom. A builder in the town where he works just finished building a large townhouse complex. The units were put up for sale and rent only 3 weeks ago. Monday of this week, a corporation went in and bought EVERY townhouse to use as staff housing for their employees. Folks, please understand that staff housing is NOT family housing - it is for employees only who are rotated in and out on a 2, 4, or 6 week work schedules. The individuals and families who rented within the first week of these townhouses going on public, now have less than 30 days to vacate. The delima, there isn't any place for these folks to go. Every RV park within 50 miles of this town has been taken over by "man camps" (portable trailers for employees only who are rotated in and out on 2, 4, 6, etc. week work schedules). Hotels, motels, inns, etc., within 100 miles, are rented at full capacity 7 days per week. Home prices and rentals, if you happen to find one, have SKYROCKETED, unlike the rest of the nation where housing markets have plummeted and foreclosures are higher than any other time since the Great Depression.
Yes, our family has some specifics we are looking for in a home and the thought of settling for something in town that I really don't want makes me very sick to my stomach. BUT, it is not for the reasons many assume. You see, we aren't planning on this being a temporary move for our family. When men work in my husband's industry, it is common for families to move around - they have to follow the work. This nomadic lifestyle allows more flexibility in home purchases because it is viewed as only temporary housing. These folks are saving and planning for the "dream house" they'll permanently move to upon retirement. Our family wants this move to be our LAST. We want a place that will suit our needs and desires for the rest of our days here on earth. Ten to fifteen years from now (if the Lord tarries), we don't want to settle down to "nice place in town". We are looking to settle down now. Our desire is a house on a few acres (min. 5 / max. 10,000, yeah, we want as much land as reasonably affordable for our budget) out in the country that is large enough to accommodate our children when they are home for family gatherings (2,600 - 3,500 sq. ft.). An open kitchen, dining and living room would make up a world of difference on other floor plan issues.
I recently posted about a home we found this past summer. We loved the floor plan, the large heated shop (with winter temperatures dipping to 35 below 0 heated shops/garages become a necessity), and the 11 acres. The price was spot on for our budget. In January, the owner's mortgage company told our realtor they are leaning toward foreclosure on this property. Many buyers in our situation would then say, "Well, that's O.K., we'll just wait and purchase it out of foreclosure." Which is exactly how we were thinking. It is now March and the owner's mortgage company continues to "drag their feet". They still have not officially decided if they will proceed with the sale or go ahead with foreclosure. Also, the mortgage relief act of 2009 has prolonged the foreclosure process from 3-4 months to 6-9 months. Meanwhile, my husband's company has lost the lease on the staff house he is bunking in (a relative of the owner needs housing thus, the owner is not renewing the lease with my husband's company). My husband's company has told him he must find alternative housing for himself and his crew and while he's at it, he needs to find housing for his family and get them up there - the travel home (5 three day visits in 2009) is nearing it's limit. You see, where many in my husband's career field rotate in and out on a 2, 4, or 6 week work schedule, my husband does not. My husband's position keeps him "on call" 24 hours per day, 7 days per week. That's why Mr.B's company wants him to move his family as soon as possible.
I sincerely, do not want to sound like I'm whining or complaining. After all, Mr. B is employed when many in our nation are unemployed and have lost everything they've worked so hard to achieve. But still, I miss my husband (even though we are often a combination of oil and water). My children miss their father. I am tired of playing the role of single parent (If I'd liked being a single parent, I wouldn't have married). I am feeling the fatigue of carrying all our family's life on my shoulders - Mr. B can't do anything to help when he's 1,500 + miles away. I am becoming deeply discouraged by the long wait for a suitable home for our family. There are times, last night was one of those times, when Mr. B considers resigning from his position and returning home. But, in all reality, that's not a sensible option (and we both know it) - my husband's career field has completely tanked in our area and there aren't any jobs here. Change careers? Although his health is excellent and he works like a 35 year old, Mr. B is 55 years old . In all honesty, companies are simply not interested in employees over the age of 50 looking to break into new careers.
We need some earnest prayer. We need a renewed strength. We need some Divine wisdom on what our next step should be. Regarding our housing situation, we need a door to open and the wisdom to walk through it.
Thank you for your time and most importantly, thank you so much for your prayers.