He brought us a house.
A little explanation. Nathan and I are not rich. In fact, my health crisis this year has quite drained our savings. His salary is not horrible, and if I were well and able to work even a little, we'd be okay. But with my health issues we simply don't have cash to spare. We have worked to cut corners in every way we can. When you see my Lego collection, that is mostly from generous gifts - same with a good deal of my crafts supplies. Nathan gets his games from work benefits. Our clothes are nearly all secondhand. I don't share any of this to garner pity, but rather to state very clearly that we have worked extremely hard to be good stewards of what we've been given. The fact remains that we could not dream of moving out of our low-end no-frills apartment anytime soon.
But we needed to. In addition to suspecting environmental allergies, Nathan is tremendously overtaxed with taking care of me. My food sensitivities are so severe that we cannot buy any premade food, which means he has to do a lot of cooking... and since we have no dishwasher, he has to wash all the dishes by hand.
I can't even put a load of clothes in the dryer for him because I don't have the strength to carry the laundry up and down three loads of stairs. Nathan's mom would be more than happy to come up from out of state to help us out, but in our tiny apartment it is very difficult to make that arrangement work comfortably for very long, especially when I am having a really painful day and desiring privacy in my misery (even though I adore my mother-in-law). Finally, because our apartment complex has no private yard of any sort, I get very little sunshine and fresh air as there simply isn't a place where I feel comfortable (even when I feel up to walking the three flights of stairs).
"God, please work a miracle," I started praying in early fall. "Please, somehow, make a house financially possible. And not just any house - the perfect house for all of my health needs."
I didn't know how it would be possible. Our families are not rich, and neither are our friends. It's probably the most impossible thing I have ever asked God.
Then, just as October began, Nathan's Dad came forwards with a plan to help us get a home. It would benefit them as well, as it would give them a place to stay when they visited their kids up here (Nathan's sister and her family live near us as well). If we could find a house that we could partition a space off for them when they were here, they would help us get through this period of financial difficulty and into a home. It means sacrifices for them as well, but they felt called to do this for us.
Oh. My. Gosh.
We were stunned. And we just prayed and prayed and prayed. And things kept working out. We went over tons of details and poured through hundreds of real estate listings, even though we couldn't actually make an offer on a house until mid-January. Since we would have to give a two month notice on our apartment and couldn't end our lease until March 31st, it gave us a very tight timeframe to work with.
We looked at a total of five houses before walking into the perfect home on January 21st - four days after our second anniversary, and one day after Nathan had been in a car accident. We had been eyeing this home for awhile (it had been on the market 49 days at this point) but hadn't looked at it sooner as it was at the top of our price range. Somehow, that day, things came together and we decided to look at it so we'd know whether it was worth pouncing if the price dropped (as it seemed due to.)
Our agent got on the phone with their agent and... uh oh! They already had another offer in! We had just four hours to decide if we wanted to make an offer, how much to offer, and draw up the paperwork! And Nathan was due at the chiropractor for a post-accident evaluation. AND we didn't have our pre-approval letter from the bank yet! And there was no possible way for my parents to stop over and check out the house - and Nathan's dad was back home two states away! It's actually crazy that Nathan's mom was even with us that day, otherwise we never would have made a move!
But move we did! Somehow everything came together in those four hours. We made the very best offer we could, hoping and praying that if this was the house God wanted us to have, it would be enough to trump the other offer. And then we waited for the most insane 3 hours...
So that's our miracle. I still can't believe it.