Some decisions made, some will come later...

It has been an eventful week since my last blog entry so here's a brief summary.

After a lot of prayer, searching, stress in the house hunt, whether we should buy or rent, we have decided to rent a 4 bedroom apartment and stay in our same community. It was really an easy decision to make after we considered all the options before us and where we stand in our "recovery". We are not quite a year out from our move to Missouri. Recovery from a significant job/income loss takes a long time, and we knew going into this recovery that nothing would be fixed overnight! We are thankful to have good jobs and that we are making slow but steady progress. Some additional factors as to why we chose to rent rather than buy:

1. Down payment-we simply don't have the funds saved to put down 3-5% for a home purchase.
2. Credit score/history-we have not built enough longevity into our improved credit scores/history.
3. Home ownership/added costs-With home ownership comes additional responsiblities not expected when renting. We would have to pay property taxes, and the added expenses that come with owning a home: repairs and maintenance, lawn care, etc.
4. Consolidated monthly costs-Unlike home ownership, our rent includes utilities, internet, cable and trash services as well as the use of on site amenities like a fitness center, game room, pool, and movie theater.

We are blessed to have this option because it keeps our costs down and more manageable, and it gives us time to continue recovering, building and growing our finances with time. The bottom line for us: we are not in a hurry to invest in a home. We want to wait until we are fully prepared to invest in a home we can enjoy and live in for a very long time. Every move, every life experience for us this far has taught us how important it truly is to wait and be patient, God's timing is perfect!

Ryan has continued to find additional sources of income to fill the gaps still existing in our budget. It is hard to lose a job, lose that income that you thought would be there and that you've worked so hard for, and face having to take on multiple jobs to make up for it. This is the reality many people are facing even today, so it is a comfort to know we are not alone. We know God is not finished with Ryan and that only good things lay ahead, and as the doors of opportunity open we will wholeheartedly seek after God's will for our lives and embrace what He blesses for us to do.

I believe somehow God makes good of every life experience we have, but I battle daily with my need to understand it. At some point in my search for understanding, after I've released my frustration and anxiety to God, I am able to rest in knowing He has my best in mind and He loves me deeply. That should be all that matters, but my OCD-control-freak nature doesn't fully grasp it. Like I said, it is a daily battle and all too often I feel like I am losing. It only gets harder as I get older, so I must choose to trust and rely on Him, let go of my grip on life and let His love and grace be sufficient for my needs.

Don’t you know? Haven’t you heard?
The Eternal, the Everlasting God,
The Creator of the whole world, never gets tired or weary.
His wisdom is beyond understanding.
God strengthens the weary
and gives vitality to those worn down by age and care.
Young people will get tired;
strapping young men will stumble and fall.
But those who trust in the Eternal One will regain their strength.
They will soar on wings as eagles.
They will run—never winded, never weary.
They will walk—never tired, never faint. Isaiah 40:28-31 The Voice Translation

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