Thursday, October 28, 2010

Refined Homeowners

It's official!!! We are now the very blessed owners of a house. God is so amazing. This house buying process has refined me more than almost anything I can remember. God has used this process to repeatedly strip me of my reliance on myself and force me to stare patience in the face like never before. He has also made Himself clear and present to us through blessing upon heaping blessing like we've never seen before as well. Through this we have truly seen Him do the unimaginable and cross barriers that NO ONE said were possible. And they wouldn't have been - without God.

I am so in awe right now. From the moment we started this journey I was never sure what the outcome would be. From our original offer, to walking away from the house, only to be brought back to it and have our impossible offer accepted. Even from signing our closing documents last night at 9pm to then thinking we were going to have to resign them all this morning! To then be told we were finally done this morning at 6am only to get a call this morning when I arrived at work saying they needed a cashier's check for $165 to finish closing. It's been a crazy ride but also a thrilling God filled ride for sure. He has filled me to overflowing through this experience with reliance on Him for every step of the way.

I am so excited and thrilled and blessed right now. I can't wait to start fixing it up, moving stuff in, and welcoming others into our home! My prayer is for God to continue to be glorified through this house.

"As for me and my and my house, we will serve the Lord." - Joshua 24:15

Monday, October 25, 2010

Blessing Through Bathrooms

This is hopefully the final week in the home BUYING saga!! I am waiting to hear either today or tomorrow when and where we are to sign papers on either Tuesday or Wednesday to become official homeowners for the first time!

There have been so many ups and downs through this process. Times of thinking we were getting the house and times we felt called to walk away. No matter what, each step of the way, God has shown Himself to us in unimaginable ways. Through blessings in the house and through trusting Him when He called us to walk away from it only to bring us back to it and bless us even more.

The last stage we were at was that the appraiser didn't say much about the major fix ups our inspector found other than the bathroom floor needed replacing because of dry rot. The other major things that weren't addressed were the 1) roof 2) plumbing and 3) crawlspace. We also knew we'd have to rip out both showers and the tub along with all the tiling walls because they were disgusting. We got quotes for the roof and plumbing which turned out to be almost half of what we expected the cost to be! Then we found out last week that the contractors fixing the bathroom floor redid the entire floors PLUS put in all new showers and a tub as well as new walls. They ALSO cleaned out the entire crawlspace and did everything needed there as well as fixed an entire wall outside the bathroom. It was an amazing and unexpected blessing. Here are some pictures of before and after of the bathrooms.



That took a MAJOR chunk out of what would have needed to be fixed on this house and we are so utterly amazed and blessed by this. It is so awesome I can't even find words to express.

"Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us, to Him be the glory!" - Ephesians 3:20-21

As silly a thing as buying a house is, God has used it to show Himself to us over and over again through these ups and downs. Just like He does in so many areas of life but sometimes it's hard to remember to pay attention. We could have made this house buying process about us or what we wanted instead of seeking God and His plan and what He wanted to do in us through it. I'm so glad we did make it about Him because through it He has changed us and grown us. We have experienced Him and have had such a thrill ride through this whole process. There are still a few days left and I am so thankful God is in control of it all and that I don't have to worry about it. No matter what, He is in control. I hope and I pray that it will become our house and that we can grow and experience Him even more through this house but either way I trust that He is in control and has the perfect plan.

"For every house is built by someone, but God is the builder of everything." -Hebrews 3:4

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Daily Bread

I am going through this devotional with a bunch of other women at my friend's church and it has been absolutely amazing. I have loved each day being refreshed with so many interesting facts and also reminders for my daily life. I wanted to share a short snippet from today's lesson that so spoke to my heart. It leaves off from yesterday where God is providing food for His people in the desert who have listened to His command to leave Egypt to go to the promised land. They are starving and grumbling against God and He provides for them.

"I will rain down bread from heaven for you. The people are to go out each day and gather enough for that day." - Exodus 16:4

"Each one is to gather as much as he needs....he who gathered much did not have too much, and he who gathered little did not have too little. Each one gathered as much as he needed." - Exodus 16:16-18

"Give us today our daily bread." - Matthew 6:11

"Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own." Matthew 6:34

God provides for us each day. Whether we experience that provision, however, is up to us. Will we listen to our instruction and go out and gather what is necessary to receive that provision of grace and mercy? It's clear that God instructed his people to be an active part in receiving their provision. Bread was not dropped inside their tents. They had to go out and get it. It's the same way with us. Am I spending time seeking God, praying, and getting in His Word? I know that when I don't, I do feel spiritually starving and everything in my life becomes more difficult. But when I draw near to Him and seek Him, I am filled with His provision and satisfaction.

It also talks about this being a DAILY experience. They couldn't store up enough food for all week in one day. They were instructed to gather their bread daily. We also can't store up our spiritual reserves for a week in one day. It is a daily need. This is something I feel that has been presented to me so many times in my life, yet is something that is so easy to forget. How? I'm not sure. But I know that when I listen and gather His provision each day, it makes things a whole lot better. I am more focused on the important details of life and don't feel the nagging despair of "what if's" or "what could be's." God is right there outside our tent just throwing bread at us....will we choose today to go out and gather it?

Friday, October 22, 2010


Sorry I have been missing for quite some time, I am back now! The past two weeks were filled with starting my new job and also Derek's first vacation, part of which we spent in San Diego visiting with friends, family, and attending Kristine's wedding. It has also been filled with last minute paper signings, getting quotes, and trying not to worry over other details surrounding our purchasing our first home.

The job has been going great and I have really loved learning about the grapes, vines, soil, and wine. It has really been so interesting as well as meeting some great people. My drive is unbelievable and every time I've made it I am reminded of God's greatness in His creation. It is really amazing.

This morning I came across this verse in my devotional:

"Then the Lord said to Moses, 'I will rain down bread from heaven for you. The people are to go out each day and gather enough for that day. In this way I will test them and see whether they will follow my instructions." -Exodus 16:4

This verse follows the people grumbling about how they should have been left in Egypt to die with food rather than be brought to their promised land and be hungry on the way. This rings true in so many areas of my life. How often do we look backwards or think wishful "if only" thoughts about what we think could be better. How often do we forget that this is the path God has placed us on the way to His promised land for us only to grumble that we're not satisfied. I know I am guilty of this and fail often at remembering to listen to God's instructions and trust in His plan.

God provided for the people in the desert with manna just like he provides for us daily. Regardless of in what form He manifests, He is always there, always providing - if we will only listen and follow. This reminded me today to let God's manna fall on me in so many ways. Are you allowing Him to do so in your life today?


Friday, October 8, 2010

Catching Up, New Card Blog, & a Whole Lot More!

I can't believe a whole week has flown by since I've last written! It has been a whirlwind but an awesome one at that! Here's a recap of my week:

~ First, I want to thank each and every one of you for your sweet comments on my previous posts! I so enjoy reading each of them. They are so encouraging and I am so very blessed through each one. THANK YOU!!!

~ I had my birthday celebration last Friday evening and had a wonderful turnout! It was so amazing to be surrounded by such awesome friends and to feel so loved. I had a great time and was so blessed by everyone that came.

~ I have been thinking and praying a lot lately about getting a part time job for some extra income but haven't had any idea of where to look. Last Friday my dear friend, Mary, suggested working in the tasting room at the winery she works at. She talked to her manager on Tuesday, I went in for an interview today, and got hired! I start training next Tuesday and am absolutely thrilled. Everyone was so sweet and seemed to really love working there. It's crazy how fast it all happened and I feel so blessed.

~ Still no news about the house but I am being patient in the waiting!!!

~ I have decided to make a website/blog to sell my greeting cards on! It's called Lindsey Michele Cards. I will be adding more cards to it regularly and would love for you to check it out! It's only in the beginning stages for now but I will try to get more cards uploaded soon.

~ The Beth Moore study I've been going to each Tuesday has been awesome and I have really enjoyed being taken back through the Old Testament and learning about things I never knew. We spent a lot of time in Genesis, the Garden of Eden, and talking about God's covenant with us this past week. As I was driving to the winery this morning the beautiful scenery made me think of Eden and how similar and peaceful it must have been. The straight rows of fruit trees, nut trees, and vineyards. The sheep, goats, cows, and horses roaming through the pastures. The rolling hills, fields of corn, and miles of blackberries lining the road. It was stunning. I love when that happens. Going through a study of the bible and being reminded of it and God's presence at the most uncommon times. If we look for it, He is always around us in everything. I love those moments when I remember to take it in and notice.

~ Summing up my week - as crazy as it has been, it has been do-able and enjoyable because it has been graced with the presence of the Lord. I have really made a strong effort to draw even closer to Him and to not pass up those moments alone with Him. It truly pays off when we draw close to Him and I have felt the blessing of that truth so strongly throughout this week. This morning as I was stressing about my interview I came across this perfect verse:

"Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go." -Joshua 1:9

It was simply perfect. Whatever we face each day whether it be stressful, wonderful, difficult, good, or bad; He is there with us. Walking right along side us holding our hand and experiencing it with us. It is so good to know He is always right there.

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Thursday, October 7, 2010

Blog Award....Blogs I love!

Last week I was surprised and encouraged by receiving this blog award from Stephanie who is an amazing and inspirational writer. I have been so encouraged and uplifted through reading her blog. I feel so blessed to be thought of by her for this and am truly so excited about it. I haven't seen anything like this award since I've started into the blog world and feel totally honored by it. Thank you so much Stephanie!!

The rules in receiving the award are:

1. Accept the award and acknowledge the person who bestowed it upon me.
Stephanie, thank you sooooooo much!!!! I am so honored and encouraged that you thought of my blog. I have been so inspired by your own blog and am so thankful for you and your precious writing. Thank you!!!!

2. Pay it forward to newly discovered blogs you enjoy.

1. Musings of a Work in Progress
One of my very best friends and I love reading about her heart and her life. She is an exceptional friend, wife, mother, sister, and so many other things! She is the epitome of striving after Christ in all she does.

2. This Life I live
Such an inspirational and encouraging writer!! I love how honest and open she is daily.

3. Soiree Swagger
If you need creative ideas for any type of party or event - this is the blog to check out! She is so creative and finds the most amazing ideas.

4. California Living
Shannon is a great writer and I love to hear her heart share all about her life and her walk with God. It's encouraging and entertaining!

I know it's only 4 but they are 4 amazing ones!! I enjoy reading all of your blogs! There are lots more out there that I need to spend more time reading and I will soon! :)

Friday, October 1, 2010

Random Friday

So much has gone on this week. Good, great, emotional,'s been a long one but an exciting one. Here are a few updates:

- Still waiting on the house situation to find out final details. The appraisal came back and didn't pick up on any of the major fix ups (roof, plumbing, crawl space) so now we have to get quotes to figure out if we'd be able to afford the house with having to fix up the major things ourselves

- Started "A Woman's Heart" study by Beth Moore and LOVE it so far!

- Have started back up making my greeting cards and it has been so much fun. I used to make them all the time and then stopped with all the moving. But I'm back up and running!

- I shaved and groomed the dogs (yes they aren't as fluffy anymore) this week which literally took me almost 6 hours!! My back is still hurting!

- Excited to be celebrating my birthday out to dinner with friends tonight!

Here are some photos of the cards I've been busy making lately. Hope you enjoy.

Happy Friday!! :)

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