After 42 years in the country, my wife and I moved to the city of Pretoria in South Africa. We had to find a house, because the place we rented for a year was sold. Since we live and work at home, we had a few requirements:
- Cool in summer and warm in winter. In the Southern Hemisphere it means the large windows must face north.
- Near our daughter and her husband with their four young kids.
- For health reasons, enough space for a vegetable garden and some fruit trees.
# The search
We embarked on the search (logically we asked the Holy Spirit for help). But what a disaster. The one place after the other was completely unsuitable. Either the workmanship was shoddy, the roof leaked, it was cold and miserable with no or limited space for a garden. Eventually we let go of all our requests and told God that we will be happy with whatever He gives us. Our daughter has a flat with everything we don’t really like, but we told God, it is fine for us if it is His choice.
# The fast
It felt to us the Holy Spirit wants us to fast. We began on the 10th of August. On the 24th of August a remarkable thing happened. Our daughter phoned around 4 pm to say her husband found the perfect house for us. That evening he showed us the place.
# The miracle
He told us that he drove one of the kids to school that morning and saw an empty house. He located the owner and met him at the property. The owner was completely shocked. He rented the house out to the neighbour’s daughter and her family. They lived there for three years, fell behind with the rent payments and moved without saying a word. Thieves moved in and stole everything they could (electric cables, taps, window closures, et cetera). The house was a mess. The vandalism made the owner (a wealthy man who saw no reason to sell) willing to let the property go.
# The sale
They decided on a price, which was less than the owner wanted. However, he did not have the heart to repair and rent the property out again. They shook hands (gentleman’s agreement). The documents were signed by the 6th of September. Now for the miracle! We would have been satisfied with whatever God gave us but God, in His grace, gave us what we really wanted:
- A north facing house with plenty of sun in winter.
- Enough space for a vegetable garden, a few fruit trees and space for the grandchildren to play.
- A beautiful view of the surroundings, not a boxed in small property.
- A quiet street, but two blocks from a shopping centre.
- Right between our son-in-law’s house and the school.
What can we say, except glory to God! The Lord answers prayer. He is wonderful – a gracious Father! ‘Delight yourself in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart,’ Psalm 37:4.