A praise band, recreation crew, and speaker were staying at our house and guest house (the McGuire house), for a whole week.
It was youth Missions week in our town. Several churches of various denominations worked together collectively to teach teenagers in the community about what mission work looks like, and reached out into the community to meet needs.
Our daughters and I moved out for the week and stayed with my mother-in-law (Dixie), while Steve stayed here with the guys. I came back to the house each day to feed them, and then back to Dixie’s to sleep.
Steve and I met for lunch on the first day of activities. We could clearly see how God was already using our land, guest house, and log house, precisely how He had given us a “vision” for as we built the McGuire house; the ministry. It was His idea for us to buy land, not ours. It was His idea for us to build a guest house on it…not ours. We were filled only with doubts and “logic” about not having the money needed to fund such a venture. But, after much prayer and seeking wise counsel, our “gut” told us to trust that it was Him, and proceed. The first 3 posts of this blog tell the whole story in more detail, and shows pictures.
As we were building, we both had a solid “idea/concept” that it would be used to house people in ministry, primarily…but also others along the way. Since building it, we’ve received numerous calls from churches asking if their speakers, visiting praise bands, etc can use it. We haven’t charged a dime. We just take care of the visitors who are away from home to help others grow closer to God.
For Missions United week, both our guest house and log home were filled. At lunch, Steve briefly mentioned how convenient and useful it would be if we had just one more guest house on our land, so that the girls and I could remain at home rather than have to stay at his mom’s (even though she’s fine with it), for times such as this, and inevitable future ones to come. Or, perhaps God would use it to house additional people (the recreation crew had girls on their team who had to stay elsewhere, because our housing was full). Building another one would cost too much money in wood and building supplies….so, oh well. Maybe later.
We didn’t mention this conversation to anyone else; there was no need to. It couldn’t happen. Once we left the restaurant, the topic was done.
The Missions United program lasted for a week. On the very last day, exhausted, we loaded in the car and were heading home from church. We suddenly got a text from a woman at our church…Tammy. She said that she had a 100-year old farmhouse for us, if we “wanted” it. ?
She said that her daughter had been out driving days before, and drove past an old farmhouse with a new house going up on the same land. The daughter stopped and put a note on the door of the farmhouse, telling the land owner that “if” they ever wanted to tear down the old house, that her father (Barney) would be happy to do it, for free. The daughter didn’t know, however, that Barney was getting ready to leave town for work for weeks or months. He wouldn’t be able to take the house down.
The land owner got the note, and called Barney and Tammy, wanting the house torn down! Seeing that Barney couldn’t do the job at that time, Tammy sent the house our direction, knowing we had done this once before with our guest house. She thought that perhaps we’d be interested in another 100-year old house to use. She had no idea we had discussed wanting to build again a week earlier at lunch.
Stunned at this extremely unexpected GIFT and golden opportunity…and the “coincidental” timing of “our” idea, Steve and I sat in the living room and prayed together about it, first…before moving one more step. We asked God that if HE wanted us to have that house, to please make it very clear and open the doors wide for us. If He did NOT want us to have the house (if someone else should have it, or if this ‘project’ would remove us from other more important things?), to please block the way, and make it impossible for us to get it. Steve then called the land owner and left a message. He told her about Barney’s inability to come, and our interest. He left her our number. Time would tell….
Hours later the owner called us. She explained to Steve that she had been trying to get rid of the old house for months, but no one would come get it. Many people had promised her that they’d show up and take it, but no one ever came. She was happy to find the note, and didn’t care who took it down, she just needed it gone. She told us that they were building a new home on the same property, and there couldn’t be two homes on the land, for tax appraisal purposes. Therefore, the old one MUST go. She told us that if we didn’t come to take it, she’d BURN it down that week!
To us, God made it loud and clear that this house was for us. Suddenly, the “idea” we had to build another guest house on our property was making more sense; it wasn’t our idea, after all, it seemed. It was probably God putting another of His plans in our head…at least it seemed. We’d tear down the 100-year old farmhouse and re-use the wood to build another structure on our land, just exactly as we did with our McGuire house Bed & Breakfast. We told her we’d start taking it down within the hour. She was amazed.
In spite of being absolutely exhausted after a whole week of 2 houses filled with guests and missions work, we took off that same hour to go start pulling it apart, preserving as much of the wood as possible.
As we were loading boards, a friend drove by and saw our car. He pulled up and asked if we needed help. We explained what we were doing, and he asked if we needed the 2x4s from the house. No, we didn’t….but he did. So, he said he’d come out in the morning to help us, with his forklift!
The next day we all worked together to take down the house, as carefully as possible.
The owners came out that afternoon. As they pulled up, fear shot through me, hoping we hadn’t misunderstood her intentions for the house (a little late for that…).
She got out of the car, happy as she could be! She said that this was “an answer to prayer”. She told me, “God clearly wants you to have this house, because no one else ever honored their word by coming out. Maybe He was protecting it just for you.”
As we were pulling it down, I sent one photograph of the demolition process to our friends Jeremy and Candace. I had no idea where they were, or what they were doing. All I said was, “Look what we’re doing.” They didn’t respond.
Steve and I started talking about what we’d do with all this wood. Steve said that we should use it to build a timber-frame style guest house, this time… and make it Scandinavian design, because I’m Swedish and Norwegian. I was so excited at the idea!
An hour or so after that conversation, our friends texted us back. They said, “We’re at a Scandinavian festival right now in Colorado! We think you guys need to use that wood to build a Scandinavian timber frame guest house next!”
Can you believe??? They had no idea we had just talked about that exact thing. They had no idea we were even thinking about building another guest house…let alone Scandinavian, or anything else. And, we had no idea they were in Colorado, or that any kind of Scandinavian festivals took place there. I was AMAZED at the “timing” of it all….and even more amazed over the exact same wording “Scandinavian timber frame”. To me, this seemed like another God-wink. The Bible talks about God’s perfect timing. Well, this was definitely a perfect example of it.
We finally finished demolition and gathering up all the wood we could get. We skipped over any wood that was rotten or unstable. The owner burned the pile of remains.
Well beyond physically exhausted from a long week, and now 2 more long days of hard physical labor, we took all the wood home and stacked it in our yard and by our barn…just waiting. (The wood is now stacked to the side of our barn, but I don’t have pictures of that.)
Therefore, (other than building the pavilion and table from January to April, written about in post called “Our journey continues…”) Steve and I have been in planning mode for our next building project…our Scandinavian Timber-frame Bed & Breakfast. I’ve been researching pictures online for months, getting ideas of the overall look we’re aiming for, and drawing out potential layout plants on computer software for the architecture of the structure.
‘Timber frame” is framing with large timbers, rather than 2x4s, creating the look of beams stretching across the ceiling inside, structural beams on the walls, and sometimes the beams as posts in the middle of rooms (but ours won’t be that big).
Though Sweden and Norway have a lot of modern and contemporary design, we’re thinking about their roots…old, rustic design elements, filled with the long-traditional hand-painted (Rosemaled) ceiling, furniture, doors….and so on. They used color and primitive furniture, and cabiny atmospheres. Here are some pictures of what we’re thinking about, taken off the internet….
We aren’t sure “when” we’ll start building it…that’s God’s timing, not ours. But it looks like this will be our next project…and you know I’ll be blogging the whole process.
If you haven’t already, be sure to read our previous post, “Our Journey Continues”, to see another task He gave us over the past 2 months. Pretty cool