For most of our married life, my wife and I have rented a house. We went through a bad buying-selling experience early in our marriage, and we did not want to go through that again. But as we started to learn about the favor of God, we realized that to experience God’s best, we needed to find out His will for us in various situations. So, we determined to do this in regard to owning a house.
After a season of listening to God, we began to feel that we should move to the Fort Worth, Texas, area. We spent many Sunday afternoons driving around Fort Worth, declaring the favor of God as we searched for just the right house. Two Scripture verses spoke powerfully to us during this time: “And I will provide a place for my people . . . so that they can have a home of their own” (2 Sam. 7:10, NIV), and “GOD himself will build you a house!” (2 Sam. 7:11, THE MESSAGE).
One Sunday evening, as we were driving past the community of Stephenville, located just southeast of Fort Worth, its lights seemed to beckon to us. We turned to each other and said, “This is home!” We realized that although we had been searching for a home in the right general area, we had not been looking in quite the right place. Stephenville was where God wanted us to be, and we believed that His favor would lead us to the right house there.
God confirmed His direction a short time later, when we ran into two friends at a restaurant where we were dining. One was a realtor who said that he’d just told his wife, “I need to get Jim and Margie a house.” Imagine his surprise when we told him that we agreed with him. We found favor with our bank, and we were quickly pre-approved for a loan. Now we just had to find our new home.
We looked at house after house, but none of them seemed just right. When we found one that we thought we could make do, we put in an offer. But it already had an offer pending, so we kept looking. We found a neighborhood that we really liked, but we felt certain that the houses were out of our price range. To our surprise, our realtor told us that the properties in this neighborhood were in fact within our range, and we found one on a corner lot that really appealed to us. Unfortunately, it had a “sale pending” sign in the front yard.
We were becoming discouraged, yet we kept declaring the favor of God where our new house was concerned. One day, as we were driving around the neighborhood, collecting sales brochures, we noticed that the “sale pending” sign on the corner house was gone, and a “for sale” sign was up in its place. We contacted our agent and made an appointment to see the house that same day. Our realtor told us that the potential purchaser’s loan had fallen through only that morning. The minute we stepped inside that house, we knew that it was home. We wrote an offer, which was accepted immediately, and six weeks later we closed on our new house. God not only provided the down payment and closing costs, but He also provided money to buy new furniture for the house, which was twice the size of our rental.
When a friend came to visit us in our new home for the first time, she said, “I need to tell you one thing about your new house. I saw the one you moved from, and I know that most people would go one step up in size from that house, and then in time would take another step up into a house like this. But the two of you have gone from there to here in just one step.”
Margie turned to her and said, “That is the favor of God; we are blessed with His favor.” Other friends have also seen the favor of God upon our lives. Some do not know what it is, but we do—and we give Him all the glory and praise.
All who see them [in their prosperity] will recognize and acknowledge that they are the people whom the Lord has blessed (Isa. 61:9, AMP).