We are going through a sermon series on Ecclesiastes in our church. I'll be honest, when I first heard about this I may have groaned inside just a little bit. I mean, Ecclesiastes. It's not my go-to book of the Bible.
However, I was (as I frequently am) wrong. I have really been enjoying it and have found that perhaps what I needed to appreciate Ecclesiastes was just some good teaching!
Last Sunday was on Ecclesiastes 3:1-15. And the message was just what I needed to hear. I may have elbowed Brian and given him a wink when the Pastor read "There is a time to build." Basically, we need not dwell in the past or worry over the future. Live in the now and enjoy God's good gifts.
Over the past many months we have been praying and talking about building a house. With the addition of Hunter to our family, we are really maxing out our space. Let me be clear about something, we could feasibly make it work and live here for the rest of our lives. I am not so foolish as to say we couldn't do it. I know people do it by choice or necessity every single day. But more and more it seems that God has laid the desire on our heart to create a home for our family that works for us and is a way we can bless others. As we took our first timid steps down the construction road, we have found God opening doors and leading us gently along the way.
What will it be like? It will be a custom ranch home with a finished basement which we (mainly me) have spent the better part of 18 months designing. It is a 5 bedroom home (3 upstairs and 2 down) with 3 full baths. The main living space will be a wide open great room. We are building in Fountain Hills on the North side of Pella. The yard will be almost the exact same size as our current yard.
Why build? There isn't a lot on the market right now that would fully meet our needs/wants. We want this to be the last time we move (so this will be our earthly forever home). We'd like to stay living in town. We want a newer home because we are not handy people or do-it-yourselfers. Home remodeling and home improvements are actually really stressful to us (and really, we've done enough of that already). Most notably, this will be our dream home and we want to share it with our kids as long as possible. We want to create memories and fill the house with noise and laughter now and not wait until they are beginning to move away. Also, the mortgage rates are awfully nice right now.
It doesn't seem like you? I can understand this. Brian and I are very frugal people. We live simply and inexpensively. We save and save and save. This is a different undertaking. But we look at building as an investment (both family-wise and financially). We also believe in quality. While we definitely won't put in the cheapest materials we can find, we will be shopping for good deals and making hopefully wise choices. The temptation is very much there to simply go with something expensive and fancy and fabulous just because we can. But we are trying to make smart decisions and not get caught up in the project.
A point to clarify: we are calling this our dream home. And it is just that - our dream. It will not be extravagant or ostentatious. Our goal is that it be very family friendly and very comfortable. While our floor plan may not seem perfect to others, it seems perfect to us. While it might not have all the finishes you would choose, it is something we are researching and praying over every step of the way. This is one prayer-covered home, people.
The kids are so excited about it and have loved seeing the process get started. Currently, our basement walls have been poured and the basement floor is about to go in. We covet your prayers for us - that we make wise decisions and also that as the time draws near we are able to sell our home to someone else who will love it the way we have.