Churchfunding Update 11: We Bought a House!

Thanks to God, and thanks to the kind help of God’s people—and that is not mere pious, flowery verbiage—we are now owners of a house in Atlanta, Georgia! This weekend our realtor gets the keys for us, and we can begin work on the house as soon as we’re ready.

hosting_area
God willing, there will be many house church gatherings hosted in this space.

Life is now too busy for a long post, but I do want to share the good news. For all the prayers we have lifted, we had better now lift some praises! Do I hear an Amen?

Here is a skeleton record of our last two dizzying weeks:

  • Friday, March 11 (only two weeks ago today!): We receive verbal confirmation that our offer on a house in Atlanta has been accepted. At last!
  • Saturday, March 12: I start driving to Pennsylvania to pick up my wife Zonya and our girls (who were there to visit Zonya’s grandmother, whose health has been declining). I stayed overnight in Ohio, with Rodney and Faith Troyer—Rodney being the CPA who provided crucial vision and guidance for our churchfunding project.
  • Monday, March 14: We drive all day from Pennsylvania to Georgia.
  • Tuesday, March 15: We receive word that our offer has indeed been accepted, and we see inside the house for the first time. It is really nasty! We pivot and immediately visit another house, one I had seen back in January. It is much nicer. I cancel the inspection that we had scheduled for the first house.
  • Wednesday, March 16: We place an offer on the second house.
  • Thursday, March 17: Our offer is accepted!
  • Friday, March 18: I call early in the morning to schedule an inspection of the second house ASAP. My call wakes up the scheduler, who is a grandmother and works from home and thanks me heartily for waking her up so she can get her grandchild off to school! Later in the day I drop off some earnest money at the realtor’s office. We also cancel our offer on the first house.
  • Sunday, March 20: Inspection completed, that evening we head to South Carolina to visit friends for several days. Zonya and the children have a great time. I car shop, without success—but also enjoy some gracious southern hospitality.
  • Wednesday, March 23: I call my Iowa banker, just to be sure we’re ready to initiate a wire transfer the next day. My banker tells me I need to be in Iowa to do this! A mad scramble begins, changing our plans to have all parties present Friday morning for closing.
  • Thursday, March 24: We leave South Carolina and return to Atlanta—about a 3 hour drive. At 1:00 p.m. we go to the attorney’s office and sign for the house purchase. Then we drive all night home to Iowa—spending another 17-1/2 hours on the road.
  • Friday, March 25: At 9:00 a.m.  I am standing outside our Iowa bank—actually, they see me outside and let me in early! We send off the wire transfer for the house purchase. Later the same morning the seller signs the papers at the attorney’s office in Atlanta. We receive confirmation mid-day that the wire transfer was successful and the transaction is now complete!

Since this is a public blog, I don’t want to share too many details about the house here. If you want to know and see more, contact me privately.

But here (visit GINGRICH HOUSE ATLANTA) are some photos of the house God is allowing us to steward. (Photo credits to Christy Smucker.) A few notes:

  • All the outdoor photos are of the first, rejected house.
  • The inside ones begin in the master bedroom, progress through the other bedrooms and the main bath, survey the main hosting area, and end up (with a few extra bedroom shots) in the room I expect to use for teaching piano.
  • You also get a bonus shot showing how pleased my wife is with the kitchen!  I’ll put it here so you don’t miss it. 🙂
zonyas_kitchen
“Can you believe it? It’s big! It’s bright! It’s almost too good to be true!” Yes, the kitchen still needs a lot of work, but I expect that a lot of great cooking will happen here. I thank God for remembering my wife when he gave us this house.

Here are some extra photos I took of the kitchen, from the dining room doorway  (looking left, center, and right):

kitchen_sink

kitchen_cupboards

kitchen_window

And, finally, here are two shots of the yard immediately behind the house. The house is on the left of the first shot (and plenty of backyard parking space). The second shot pans to the right, with more greenery and an outdoor hosting space across a little bridge.

backyard1

backyard2

Well, I better stop. I need to live life and not merely report it!

But please do take time to join us in thanking God for his goodness! And we covet your prayers for the weeks ahead, which will include many decisions, much travel, and lots of time apart as a couple and a family.

Our prayer is not only that these busy days will help free us to be more useful in years ahead, but also that we will honor Christ in each moment, right here and now.

Oh, and one more thing: Next month is April, and we have not forgotten: We indeed plan to begin repaying our lenders, in random order (giving preference to seniors), in $500 monthly increments.

Share your celebrations or advice in the comments below. Thank you!


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6 thoughts on “Churchfunding Update 11: We Bought a House!”

  1. Praising the Lord with you all! So happy for you and yes, I agree with Zonya….love the kitchen! And that window, that window, that window….as your wife put it. =)

  2. The house is beautiful! I can just see the house church gatherings in that living space! 🙂 Moving is exhausting–I will pray it goes quickly and smoothly for you!

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