Since Part 1 ended where we were last Tuesday with 4 rental options, I thought I would list them here and then tell you why they either would or would not work well. If you missed part 1, this probably does not make sense so click here to read it and get caught up. Anyway, here are the 4 options we ended the blog with yesterday:
- Renting the “green” house and the “new” house together with the boys living in the green house and the girls living in the newer house along with Jess, Sophie, and I. This option was still a strong possibility, but it would have been difficult for us to live in the same house with that many kids and a baby. Also, neither house has water or electricity other than EDH (the Haitian power company) and having EDH right now is very similar to having no power.
- Renting the “mansion” and either all living their together or also renting the “new” house in the previous scenario. The mansion is actually located directly beside the new house and would have been a wonderful option. The main issue was the fact that the owner was looking for $4,000/month and a 5 year agreement and we could not afford to do either.
- We had also approached Christianville about paying rent for one of their buildings, but we were still waiting to hear back about whether or not that was a possibility.
- Our last option came at the last minute and was a large compound in a neighboring community called Santo. They had plenty of space, a separate house for our family, an abundance of bathrooms, 2 big generators that would help provide consistent electricity, and the price was negotiable. The downside was that it was outside of the area where our kids had lived for a long time and they were very scared about moving.
These were our options on Tuesday. None of them were perfect but each of them presented pluses and minuses that we were excited about. Let me tell you the order in which these possibilities all started falling apart.
- We found out that Christianville was not a possibility. Strike one.
- The owners of the mansion were not budging from their price or their timeline and we really could not afford it. Strike 2.
- Our kids made it clear that they did not want to live in Santo and we would have had to drive on the main road to get them to school. To make this happen we would have had to purchase another car and paid another driver to make it safe and this effectively made our decision for us…Santo was out.
So we were back to where we started. As of Tuesday we had 4 options as of Wednesday night we were down to 1 and this was probably our least favorite of all of the options. So Tracey and I had a meeting for that Thursday at 9:00 to talk through the contract and timeframe with the “green” house (which we were also beginning to refer to as the “old” house at that point) because it was quite literally our last option. We got there right around 9:00 and, of course, the person we were meeting was not there. So Tracey and I sat and waited and we started talking with Marco who is a security guard for a local ministry called Reach Global. We have gotten to know some of their missionaries and employees and they are all great people. Anyway, while we were sitting, Marco reminded me of a house down the road that I had seen and we decided to just go take a look at it just to try and remember what it was like. At this point, it was about 10:00 and the person we were waiting for was an hour late.
When we got to the house, it was nothing like I remembered. There were 3 bedrooms and 1.5 baths downstairs along with a living room, dining room, and kitchen. It was a huge house but still not big enough for our kids…Until we went upstairs. Upstairs, there was a living room, 3 big bedrooms, a big porch, and 2 full baths. On top of that, there was an iron door at the top of the steps that we could shut at night where the girls and boys could be completely separated. It was, in fact, the perfect house for what we were looking for. So I called the owner thinking it would be pretty expensive and he lived in Canada so he was hard to find right away. I kept looking around thinking what a great place it would be when the “guardian’s” (the guarding is the person who takes care of someone else’s house if they live out of the area) phone rang and he passed it to me. The owner started with a pretty high price just like I expected, but literally 2 minutes later we had negotiated down to the exact same cost as the “green or old” house that we had been looking at! Tracey, Gina, and I knew right then that this was the house. We had looked all over the place for days and all of a sudden, out of nowhere, we were in the perfect place.
GOD is so awesome and has worked this situation out like only He can. Let me just give you some of the plusses for this house:
- It is right next door to some friends of ours (Dave and Sharron with Reach Global) who are just great people.
- It is at the end of a very very quiet street inhabited mostly by American missionaries and one of our house moms.
- It is even closer to Christianville than Hope Rising and our kids can walk to school.
- The kids love it.
- Jess, Sophie, and I get our own house which is very important here.
- There are mango trees, places to play, and plenty of living space in the new home.
- Our house is brand new and has never been lived in.
Honestly, I could keep going, but it is just so great that GOD has brought us to this place. Also, I could fill a pretty good list of things that will be difficult for us to accomplish to make the houses ready, but that is for another time. If you want to see a list of things that we really need prior to making these homes what we need them to be, please click here. The good thing about what we will purchase and use at these houses is that they are all things that we can use anywhere! I like to phrase it like this, the things we need are not expenses, but investments in our future (ie. solar panels, inverters, furniture, etc.). Thank you so much for praying for us and for always being there for us and our children. We truly believe that GOD is using all of us together to bring glory to Himself and that is really all we can ask for. There are so many lessons that GOD continually teaches us and I just pray that we are always open and wise enough to learn them. This past week He is just reassuring us that GOD is in control. He did not choose the easiest option, the quickest option, the prettiest option, or even the biggest option. But He did choose the one option that was exactly what we needed, when we needed it, and for the price we needed it to be. The bottom line is simply this:
GOD is in control!
And that one simple and short line is enough to bring us to our knees in worship. Just thinking about the fact hat He is in control of where this small organization with 19 children and soon-to-be 30 employees takes my mind to the idea that He truly controls everything. From when and how I breathe to how hot the sun is, GOD is in control. And because GOD is love and He is our Father and He is merciful and He has compassion and He is just, we can rest in the fact that He is in control and that is exactly where we need Him to be.