Monday, October 28, 2013

The Miracle


God has moved mountains for us.

Clearly, doors have been closing on our dreams for the property.  Have you ever wondered, 
"Is Jesus telling us to stop, or is the enemy trying to thwart His hopes for our lives?"  
"Are we supposed to submit by stopping, or persevere?"

We are pretty committed, determined people.  We began a project for which we had high hopes.  Along the way we ran into may roadblocks.  In fact, there were big problems from the beginning.

One of the beautiful aspects of the God we serve is that He allows us to make our own decisions.  While He promises to give wisdom and direction, in His own time, He doesn't overrule our free will, even when He knows what would be best for us.

God watched while we stumbled along, fiercely determined to see our plans through to the end.  While I always sensed His presence, there were many times I was downright mad at Him for withholding a direct answer and solution.  I felt like we were flying solo.
But faith is a wonderful concept.
I realized that I didn't have to feel secure to actually be secure.  God's promises always hold true, whether one feels them or not.

We took out a construction loan last August.  Then in January we were sued, at which point we quit building and wondered what the heck we were going to do.

As August approached so did the deadline for our construction loan.  We were supposed to be done building and ready to roll into a mortgage.  But we weren't done building.  In fact, we concluded that we can't finish the project.

We learned much about neighboring landowners.  One is (obviously) litigious; another is rumored to be a felon and spends lots of time drinking.  The area is less than friendly.  Thankfully we avoided involvement in several altercations between other landowners, involving guns and cops.

{Once, a promised home-delivered lasagna dinner kept us from shotgun fire.  I was shaking in my shoes two days later when I walked up to the door to deliver the meal.  But like all good peace offerings, it did the trick.  And I was able to share Jesus with the couple who, with tears in their eyes, told me of the pain they've experienced in their lives.}

We couldn't live there again.

The bank was gracious enough to offer a long-term loan, the terms of which, ahem, sucked.  We had no choice.  We'd have to accept the loan and try to figure out how we'd make the monthly payments while paying our other mortgage on the house we've owned since 1999.

Our plan was to put the property on the market asap.  But "asap" was looking like it would be roughly 4 years out, accounting for what could happen with the lawsuit.

Jeremy worked a three week shift (3 weeks at work, one week home) to come up with the cash needed at closing.
 We were scheduled to close the day after he returned.

In the meantime, a lady owning land close by listed her property on the market.  Within 24 hours she had an offer.
The buyer requested a title search and because of the implications of the lawsuit, the search came up with a message of "no legal access".  This meant several landowners, along with us, were landlocked. The deal was off between this seller and buyer.

The following Sunday Jeremy got a phone call at work from another landowner.  He had been locked in, as The Man suing us had strung a chain across the road, locked it, and parked a vehicle in front of the chain, all while the neighbor was back on his land for the day.

I called our lawyer who explained that we landowners would probably have to file a case against The Man blocking access, in order to be allowed to our properties.  Fun.  Just when we thought things couldn't get any more complicated, my head was spinning over the new developments.

About this time, the bank called to cancel our closing appointment.  Big problems. They were made aware (by the title company) of the new access issue and were unable to close on the loan.  Although they were "talking with the lawyers" about potential solutions to the problem, our lawyer warned us that they may have to call the note, thereby forcing us into bankruptcy.

It appeared as though the sun was setting on us.  Everything was happening so quickly.
"Jesus", I plead, "FIX THIS!  We're out of time.  We're out of options."

I had done my part.  Over the preceding months I had come up with Options A, B, and C.  I presented the Options to Him for His review.  And He sat.  And did nothing.
 "Come on", I urged.  "Just pick one!  Hurry up!"

Jeremy got into town on Tuesday.  Wednesday morning he called one of the neighboring landowners to talk about the access issue and ask if they'd join in on the legal case to establish access.

"Why would we do that?" she asked.  "We have no access problems."

She explained to Jeremy that The Man suing us had given them permission to trespass.

"Great", Jeremy said, "but that doesn't do us any good.  We're going to need to access our property.  We've got a lot of cleaning up to do before we can put it on the market."

"What?  You're going to sell your property?  How much do you want for it?  I'll buy it."

Jeremy got off the phone and the look on his face was priceless.   Jesus was in the middle of working a miracle and we were soaking up every bit of it.

Just a few weeks earlier we heard a rumor that this woman had inherited a large amount of money.  Some say it was from a deceased relative.  I say it was directly from Jesus.

We negotiated a price with her and came to an agreement.  Early the next week we signed papers and it was done.  Only someone with permission to access it would buy our land.  And they'd need a bunch of cash too, because no bank could write a loan on it.

Oh! And remember that buyer who made an offer on our neighbor's property?  It seems that neighbor took her land off the market so she could sell it to a relative instead.  The buyer was upset, until she received a call from Jeremy who offered her the option of buying ours.  She told us if the transaction with the other neighbor had taken place, there's no way she would have bought our land.

The lawsuit isn't over.  But now instead of it causing massive destruction to our lives, it's just rather inconvenient.

God moved mountains in the span of one week.  Only He could pull off such a miracle.  Within the same week, on the heels of this transaction at the property was our adoption fundraiser, at which He raised $13,000 toward bringing our girls home.

 The Lord has done great things for us and we are filled with joy.  Psalm 126:3


Betty Jobbins said...

Praise the Lord! I have been earnestly praying for your situation, Is anything to hard for our God? No, nothing! We love you all and continue to pray for you.

Betty Jobbins said...

Perhaps you could still sue the title company or whoever told you that you had access when you bought the property and be compensated for all the money you lost on the land, metal building and generator.

Linda said...

This is an amazing miracle story. Thanks for sharing. May God continue to go before you as you follow him.

Betty Jobbins said...

Sarah, I was looking at your amazing photos and wondering, have you ever though of being a photographer? You definitely have a God given talent for it. Maybe start with a clllllalendar with some of your photos. It's just a thought.