As we drove away from a friend’s home recently, I thought of their beautiful white cabinets and perfectly coordinated rugs and curtains and the adorable little coffee bar that made me want to start drinking cappuccinos on the regular (despite my inability to handle caffeine). Jealousy is ugly and nobody wears it well, including me. Jealousy and insecurity make a baby called discontent. And discontent is the killer of joy.
For a few hours I believed a lie. A lie that somehow we would be happier, more comfortable, more accepted, dare I say it, more loved – if only we had money for a nicer house.
This house is not what I wanted. I had grand ideas about all the things we could get with our small budget. My view on real estate is optimistic (unrealistic).
The deal breaker would be if there was a stacked washer and dryer. How could we possibly function with that nonsense?
The first thing we saw as we toured our home: stacked washer and dryer. God has a truly great sense of humor.
I was out – it was too small. Too this. Too that. Cute, but not for us. So we called the land lord and said, thanks, but no thanks. We felt good, we were ready to explore our other options (there were none).
The next morning our (would-be) land lord called me at work and said he was willing to lower the rent because he thought we would be such good tenants.
And I knew then that God was calling us to this home. Mr. Engineer was on board (he was less afraid of stacked washer and dryers I suppose).
This was not what I wanted.
I didn’t know I wanted a large turn around driveway that fits all our friends when we host small group, bonfires and lingerie showers. I didn’t know I would grow to love the fact that it is gravel and I can hear when our friend and family arrive, anticipating sharing our home. I didn’t know that I wanted a kitchen that is the biggest room in the house where we spend the most amount of time at the table that Mr. Engineer built with his own hands. I didn’t know how many jeans I could stuff into a stacked washer and dryer. I didn’t know that small means cozy and creative and easy (quick) to clean. I didn’t know that a rusted fire pit could turn a cold evening into a memorable one. I didn’t know I wanted a front porch where sipping coffee turns into a mini-getaway (even if the railing is gone and the paint peels). I didn’t know how much fun it would be to have our own yard to plant tomatoes and have a little space (and not hear our neighbor’s TV through the wall).
Sometimes the sweetest things are the things we thought we didn’t want.