In the late 1990s, the Lord directed Deborah and me to move to Tulsa, Oklahoma, to help Buddy and Pat Harrison set up a media department at Faith Christian Fellowship International Church (FCF). Thinking that our assignment at FCF would be short, we initially moved into an apartment near Buddy and Pat’s home—close enough that we walked to their house almost daily to pray. But as time passed, we realized that the Lord had much more for us to do in Tulsa, so we started looking at houses.
We found one in Buddy and Pat’s neighborhood that really caught our eye, but when we pulled the flyer from the box attached to the “for sale” sign, we dropped it like a hot potato. The listing price was way more than we wanted to spend. Maybe apartment living wasn’t so bad after all.
Some time later, as I was driving to work one morning, the Lord asked, “How would you like to have a house?”
When I called Deborah to tell her what the Lord had said, she exclaimed, “No more Laundromat or loud neighbors!” Later that day, I called a realtor and asked her to show us houses within our price range as soon as possible. We didn’t want to invest too much money, because we still didn’t know how long our assignment in Tulsa would last.
The next day, we saw 10 homes, none of which was suitable. We increased our budget, and the following day we saw several more homes, none of which met our needs. Since we had little free time, we wanted a nice house that didn’t need any work. That’s when the Lord spoke to me again: “What about that house you liked when you walked to Buddy’s?”
I replied, “Well, yeah, but that house was way more than what we want to spend.”
“What if I told you that you could have it for 40 percent off their asking price?”
Now God really had my attention. I told the realtor that we wanted to see the house, and she informed me that it was way out of our price range. I told her we wanted to see it anyway. We fell in love with the place the moment we stepped inside. It had been completely remodeled and furnished with new appliances, and it was perfect just the way it was.
I reminded the realtor that she was required to submit any offer we wanted to make, and we wrote a contract offering substantially less than the asking price. She thought we were nuts—until the seller accepted our offer, and we closed one week later for the exact price the Lord had given me.
A week after we moved into our new home, we were walking through the neighborhood one evening and stopped to introduce ourselves to one of our new neighbors.
“You stole that house,” she said.
“No, the Lord blessed us with that house,” I replied. “It’s the favor of God.”
“You don’t understand,” the woman said. “I work for the tax commission, and I saw the record of what you paid. I don’t understand it; our friends made an offer on that house for $10,000 less than what they were asking, and the seller turned them down. Then he sells it to you for that price—you stole it!”
“Like I said,” I told her with a smile, “it’s the favor of God.”
God’s favor is amazing. He blessed us with the perfect home—and He blessed me even more, just one week later, when He told me that I’d moved up a level in faith. I asked Him what He meant, and He said that instead of claiming something on my own, I had let Him bless me with His best.