Y’all might not know this.
I’m a certifiable horse freak.
But when we decided to bring home Isabelle, in 2005, I sold my horse that I’d bought as a 2 year old. He’d been my baby for 11 years.
I cried for days.
But God gave me such peace about it. I knew, beyond my sadness, it was the right thing to do. For Him. For me. And for our family.
But now, y’all.
Now, God has planted us here, smack dab in the middle of horse country. And on a beautiful piece of horse property, to boot.
And it’s way too long of a story to tell, but I didn’t even want to get this place. It just seemed like too much my dream – the dream that God has asked me to lay down when we picked up the dream of bringing our Isabelle home.
And I was terrified of circumventing our family’s best interest on account of my horse-y freakishness. Because I am so, soooo easily swayed when it comes to chasing after what I want instead of what God wants for me.
Long story short, though. Because I just have to share with y’all…
My husband came down here in May to scout it out. We had narrowed it down online to several we liked and two houses really stood out. This one, and another one. And, on paper, the other house seemed much more logical. Much more sensible. Much more manageable. Much smaller back yard.
And I had my foot in the door to commit, I was ready.
I knew what God was going to do.
During Chris’ time here I waited at home, hopelessly distracted. I couldn’t wait to hear his impression of the area, the schools and, most of all, the houses. He visited the other house first and was impressed. He took pictures, asked questions, and called me to tell me he really, really liked it.
As far as I was concerned, it was a done deal.
Then he came here. To this house. And he said that the moment he walked in, he knew.
This was the house.
He called me and as soon as I heard his voice I knew. And I told him I had to go and quickly hung up the phone.
I couldn’t stop crying.
It was an overwhelming mixture of fear of allowing myself to have that dream again, disbelief at this completely unexpected turn of events, and indescribable joy at His goodness and love.
And feeling totally and completely undeserving. He has and continues to bless me abundantly – this just honestly seemed too wonderful to be true.
I thought I knew what God was going to do.
But, as it turned out, I didn’t have the slightest clue.
And I am so grateful for the beautiful reminder that He is the boss.
“For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways,” declares the Lord.
“As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and My thoughts
than your thoughts.” – Isaiah 55:8-9
anything but LoKEY says
What a beautiful place! God is such a good Father!!
STEFANIE!!!!! REALLY???? Oh my goodness can I please see all those beautiful younguns standing on that top porch PLEASE????
A PORCH! TWO PORCHES!
And yellow? SWEET! So beautiful, friend.
I love that last comment…”I thought I knew what God was going to do, but as it turned out, I didn’t have the slightest clue.”
🙂 Love that. Love HIM!
Angela Braniff says
I understand what you mean EXACTLY! God too asked me to lay down my love for horses, and competition, to bring our daughter home from the Congo. It was one of that hardest decisions of my life to let it go. But now, I feel he is slowly calling me back, allowing me to ride here and there, and maybe one day, I’ll have my own horse again!
It’s hard to understand that love of horses, unless you feel it too!
Praying for you!
That is so pretty! My daughter is horse crazy, so we got her one :0). We had NO idea that was exactly what she needed, but God sure did! Grace couldn’t look you in the eye, her learning disabilities strapped her with feelings of worthlessness, her confusion of her adoption had robbed her of so much joy.
This gorgeous girl of mine today is confident, sweet as honey and BELIEVES she is something pretty special. She’s in love with a furry boy and he thinks she’s the greenest pasture he’s ever laid hoofs on. To watch them jump and compete together is a perfectly choreographed dance. So, I think you need a furry equine to round out that gorgeous family of yours, who knows..maybe that’s just what He knows you need. I sure hope so ;0)
It’s a beautiful house Stephanie. Can’t wait to see more photos
That’s your house? It looks like it came out of a magazine, or a dream……
That house is just gorgeous. I imagine sleep-outs on the upper porch. Family gatherings on the lower porch. Blowing bubbles from each.
Our pastor once did a sermon on making all your dreams come true. It coincided with graduation. How many people write “May all your dreams come true” etc. . .On graduation cards and he went on saying how your own dreams aren’t good enough and how God has plans beyond our wildest imaginations. It was a really good sermon. Looks like God has blessed you and your family. May you always follow Him.
Goodness gracious… it’s just breathtaking! I love to see God shower His goodness on your family!! Enjoy the blessing!
Oh my goodness…your home is beautiful. I can only imagine sitting out on the porch, drinking a glass of iced tea, and watching the kids play in the yard. That sounds like a perfect evening. One that God gets all the honor and glory!!!
wowzer…that is one beautiful place to raise some babies. PLEASE let us see more of the outside and inside. It does look like it is from a magazine…..God is soooooo good.
This post made me well up with tears!
God really does love to bless his children!
christy Lillie says
This house is seriously amazing! That house and all of those great kids?! Seriously, you are one lucky lady!
Stephanie, what a beautiful home you have….I LOVE the porch…have always wanted a home with a porch like this but so far it has’t happened for us. We also love horses and our 12 year old daughter would LOVE to own one…have fun and can’t wait to see more pictures of your home;)
beautiful home! would love to see more pics – oh I can just see your sweet bebes playing on the porch(es)!
I grew up in my great grandfather’s house. It was called The Old Plantation, had double porches like this, and was originally yellow. I would have fallen in love with this place too!
A beautiful home for a beautiful family. God is so very good…always!
Annie L says
Wow, so beautiful! God is so good! Thank you for sharing this story! He truly does love to bless us!!
Gorgeous! I seriously would have such a hard time moving so much. I adore my house and put so much time into my garden that it would about kill me to leave. I told my husband that I love our house to an unrighteous degree. I shouldn’t love any wordly thing so much.
BUT, you didn’t pick your current location and if the perfect house just happened to be for sale when you needed it, well, I don’t think there should be any guilt involved at all. Just enjoy it! Can’t wait to see the inside…..if you’re willing to share!
And IF you get a horse, I’m totally serious about the goat companion thing. The goats we were given are by far the easiest animals we’ve ever had. They hardly drink anything, they eat all our bramble, and they’re completely hilarious.
It’s story-book beautiful, Stefanie! What a blessing from the Lord especially for you!
Gorgeous!! I’m a horse freak too, so I can only imagine how excited you are. 🙂
“Delight yourself in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart.” Psalm 37:4
Beautiful! Can’t wait to see pics of all the littles sitting out on the porch!
We like horses too but can’t have them where we live. So…..we settled for 2 great danes. People think they look like small ponies when they run around the back yard. Congratulations!
Thank you for the reminder of how much God loves us… and not only wants us to do His will and to follow Him… He wants to bless us more than we could ever imagine. I’m so thankful on your behalf… and so hopeful for BOTH of us. 🙂
Football and Fried Rice says
The house is gorgeous, and so is the reminder that what He has planned for us? Pretty much rocks!
Tara Anderson says
Stefanie, I can SO relate to this post! I felt the same way a few months ago when we were matched with our daughter…a dream I had given up, but that God blew me away with. I’m thankful he’s done the same for you. May the years in your BEAUTIFUL new home be abundantly blessed!!!
Nicole A. says
Wow ~ it’s tremendous!! I love it!!
I sold one horse when my first son was born and the second when my second son was born.It was the right thing to do on so many levels, but it was still very hard. I am thrilled to be a stay-at-home mom, but horses were definitely not something that could fit in with that plan.
I have ridden my entire life, and competed, and just loved it all so much! It’s like a drug ~ I know once I go back, I will be completely consumed again, so I patiently wait for that time, and certainly enjoy all the opportunities I’ve been given in the meantime!
(The smell of leather, the smell of horse sweat, the smell of the barn … love it!)
Good luck to you! What a perfect place for your whole family! God is so good!
All the best,
Nicole A., now in LA
Its breathtaking! Surely looks like a home…and to be honest. I love horses a lot too but have never been able to own them, as circumstances have never allowed for it, yet, I still dream the dream! But my biggest dream is a log lodge home….not a log cabin but a lodge to fit all my children in, and grandchildren and great grands! (Legacy Lodge maybe? Or Heritage Hollow?)
Can’t wait to see what the Lord showers on you next!
Amazing! This is so encouraging to me today. God is a good Father, and He knows exactly how to bless our socks off…IF we trust Him!
What are you going to name it? (*do you do that….name the house kinda thing…….that house so looks like it needs a name*)
cry! cry! cry! you just make me cry all the time, stefanie! i love your blog as it truly is a place of memorial stones (read joshua 4) as you share stories of God’s hand in your life. PRAISE HIM…you are heaping up a whole pile of stones here!
It’s absolutely beautiful!
Sue Mom of Two says
GORGEOUS! Can’t wait to see a picture with all of the kiddos lined up on that balcony upstairs!
PERFECT home, and you and your family definitely deserve a nice home with LOTS of room, indoors and outdoors both.
Wow. Your house is beautiful. I love the wraparound porches and the color. It makes me think of hot summer afternoons and lemonade. I don’t have a horse – I wish! – but I do live in central Kentucky, 90 mins south of Lexington. The place for horses.
Beautiful home filled with beautiful people! Hope you will share more pics with your your blog friends!
May you enjoy many, many blessed years in this home as your follow your awesome God!
a.m.a.z.i.n.g. . . . . It is the blessing of the LORD that makes rich, And He adds no sorrow to it. Proverbs 10:22
can’t wait to see more photos!
Oh – my – word!!!! You lucky, lucky girl!!! Not only do I absolutely ADORE the house…and I agree with some others – those kiddos need to be lined up on the porch (better do a shot on each porch just to be SURE)….but to be able to have horses to boot!!! I rode competitively from the time I was 7 to 19…I had a pony and two horses throughout the years. It is the one thing I miss as an adult – I wish I had never stopped riding and hopefully I will be able to go back (just need to get this back o’ mine figured out). Lucky, lucky friend!!!
Blessings and Hugs, Ashley
Wow..That is like a dream!!! I’m so happy for you and the Family!!! HE will continue to provide and bring you closer to your dream everyday for you have given yourself to him!!! You are one BLESSED Momma!!! Continue on your journey Sista…..I can’t wait to see all your rewards.
What a beautiful house! What a blessing!
Seriously, that picture just took my breath away! I too was a “horse person”, in my past, pre-children life. This past Tuesday, I got back in the saddle for the first time in 16 years. It is like having a little piece of me back again 🙂 Being at the barn gives me such a sense of peace, not many of my friends can understand. And, although today I can barely walk, I will be back in the saddle again next week 🙂 Happy you have your dream back….you undoubtedly deserve it.
Oh Stefanie! It is perfect and to be able to have your dream again is just wonderful! My brother and his wife have horses and board horses. They have that love too! I grew up around horses, riding them and loving them (I love just about any furry critter) but I never had that true love for them like I do for dogs. My mother and SIL, however, do have that love and it is great to be able to take our kiddos to their farm where they can ride! I am just so happy for you and you are so right about the Lord’s plans for us!!! PERFECT!
Holy smokes! Your house is awesome! Okay girlie, you must indulge us and post more pictures. 🙂
Now that gives new meaning to “Home Sweet Home”! So happy for you and yours! Love & Blessings, Kim
Wow! Very nice…. I just bought a rescue horse for my birthday 2 days ago…. a lifelong dream come true. She is boarded at the rescue ranch because my yard is very tiny. But she is only 10 minutes away. I’m happy you are in horse country….to me there is nothing more beautiful than children and horses!
that house is GORGEOUS. more pictures, please! & isn’t it crazy, sometimes, how God works things out not only for our needs but for our wants as well?
Teresa Ko says
WOW! Beautiful, beautiful home! It’s like a mini-white house!
Your home is breath-taking! Being the house-enthusiast that I am, I cannot wait to see more photos. Photos of your property of the inside, etc, etc… LOVE IT!
But what I love even more is that God KNEW ALL ALONG the desires of your heart. I’ve seen this SO much lately. SO MUCH! When you finally and truly surrender all. When you give up that one thing that you loved and coveted the most… He rewards you! He LOVES to bless His children… and even more when we least expect it or think it impossible! SO, SO happy for you! Bring on the HORSES! (my Breanna is a die-hard horse lover, too! I told her she needs to marry a good God-fearing cowboy one day! ~ needless to say, she is all over that idea!! 😉
God bless you in your new home! <
Oh my goodness! Gorgeous house! You guys are so blessed! 🙂 but you already know that, hey?!!!
Lee Ann says
Absolutely beautiful Stefanie!!! It looks absolutely perfect in EVERY way…..He IS good!!! I can’t wait to hear when you have a four legged critter arrive at your barn, kids are racing out the door to feed, and little ones on lead line. There is something so special about horses….as we both know. 🙂 SO incredibly happy your family…..but I really love that He has blessed YOU…..you are so deserving dear friend!!
Girl – I wondered just how long it would take…..They / it never leaves you. Then I saw the barn, the fencing – and knew!!!!!!! Much joy to you – your kids deserve to know horses well.
Would it be wrong for me to say, I’m a little bit jealous! Really though, I couldn’t be happier for you and your sweet family! God is so good!!
HOORAH – what a beautiful home for a beautiful family! I can see it a Christmas – 4 pines – no – better Cedar’s – one on each corner of the porches – just white lights on them….and the lights all on inside the house – Christmas at Home!
And yeah – it’s easy to get ‘distracted’ from your call – but it’s also hard to see when the Father is rewarding His Faithful.
God sometimes calls for the 3 S’s – Service, Suffering and Sacrifice. But he also gives us the means to have the 3 L’s to Live, Laugh and Love. Accept the reward and enjoy life too!
And yeah – warm up the camera – we want to see more!
hugs – aus and co.
Kathie Hikade says
Love this story…LOVE the house!!!
Heather Peterson says
How incredibly amazing! What a beautiful God we serve. You are an angel here on earth and I am so blessed to see you be blessed in this amazing way!
ABSOLUTELY STUNNING and when I look at it….I see every single one of your gorgeous babies (and that handsome man of yours) nestled inside! I wish you all the very, very best of everything there….I see so many stellar memories about to be made there!
A beautiful home for a beautiful family 🙂
Kim from 3 peanuts says
I love your new home!!! It is beautiful Stef. Absolutely beautiful!!! But what is even more beautiful is your story. God rewards those who are faithful. You have incredible faith. I am delighted in sharing in your daily rewards.
Catching up! You already know I have porch envy!!! This is so BEAUTIFUL!!!! Congratulations on your new baby Jewel too!!!!!
You deserve it my friend!