This time last year we were surrounded by friends, family, and coworkers for our housewarming party.

We had officially purchased our first home,
and were eager to celebrate that major life event,
and desperate to plant roots here in Lancaster.Our housewarming party set the tone for what we wanted to accomplish in having a home;
a safe place,
a fun place,
a let the tears flow & the laughter burst forth freely place,
a refreshing for your soul kinda place,
with great food and even better cake.

And that’s what is has been.
It’s been a hard year, but a wonderful year .This home has served as a refuge in the storm,
a constant retreat amidst every day life and the stressors that try to creep their way in.

The walls of this home saw so much of our dreams, our ugly, our hopes, our tears, our successes, our anger, our fears, our laughter.

This home provided a warmth, a peace, a stability
among the cold, chaos, and change.

Sometimes in order to pursue better things, it means having to let go of something already great.


This home was working for us.
Easily our best move to date.
We loved our home, I found a job that made me come alive, we found our favorite eateries, our favorite stores, parks, rivers for our dog to swim in, and we found a church with a community of people that was all about what we were searching for: making friends, connecting to Jesus, and changing lives.

Then what our dear friend Suzy calls the stirring started to happen.

And when the stirring begins,
you either go with its flow or its a never ending battle of swimming upstream.


Because you see the best place in the world becomes the worst place in the world, if the timing is off.
Likewise with relationships, the “right person” in the wrong timing,  becomes the wrong person.
It’s not a place it’s the timing.
It’s not a person it’s the timing.
Timing is everything.

Ever since I was a little girl and heard the scripture about there being a season for every activity,
how there is a time for everything,
I had a grip… even if ever so slight, that everything has its proper time,

“For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven:
a time to be born, and a time to die;

 

a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted;


a time to kill, and a time to heal;

 

a time to break down, and a time to build up;

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a time to weep, and a time to laugh;
a time to mourn, and a time to dance;

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a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together;
a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;

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a time to seek, and a time to lose;
a time to keep, and a time to cast away;

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a time to tear, and a time to sew;
a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;

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a time to love, and a time to hate;

 

a time for war, and a time for peace.” ( Ecclesiastes 3:1-8)

Sometimes we are to cry, sometimes we are dance, sometimes we are to stay,
& sometimes we are to go.

My prayer is for you is this,
 may the fear of the unknown never keep you from responding to the stirring.

As I’ve adulted I’ve learned that in all times we are to be attentive to the stirring.

Backtracking a bit, telling the full story, far more then the original post I intended on writing,
but hey the timing is right, so instead of “a bit” I’m backtracking A BUNCH.Early December Greg started to feel this stirring, this place that he was intending on staying working for for the next 10 years of his life, began to not feel right.

The best place becomes the worst place when the timing is off.


This place that over a year ago solidified the prompting we felt to purchase our first home because of how right the timing was then, began to shift.

It was as if this imaginary clock was ticking, and Greg was becoming increasingly more aware of how the time stamp was sooner rather then later.

It was as if the top half of the hour glass for working where he did was covered and had now finally been revealed to him.

A time that God knew all along, but Greg was finally seeing just how much sand was left in this hourglass of working where he was.

Greg found himself more and more uneasy with staying working there, and with no future job prospect in line, he responded to this stirring and he quit.

Make no mistake,my husband is very logical.
He crosses his t’s and dots his i’s.
Every action he makes is very purposeful, very methodical, and he calculates everything.
He’s the make your bed every morning kinda guy,
the buttons on the duvet need to be in this place at all times.
Whenever we travel anywhere the route we take is always the most efficient and relative to our purpose in getting to said destination.

So this move was very much out of character, but simultaneously very in character.

Because I’ve seen more and more with every decision,
how he’s developing his character to incorporate God’s calculations.

How responding to the stirring supersedes his inclination for the logical,
 because he wants to operate in obedience to the giver of  logic.


Timing changes something that was once SO right at one point, and makes in not right a year later.

Likewise, in early December I felt a stirring, it began with me loving my job.
Feeling so alive when I taught my students so I began to toy around with the idea of getting certified in education.

As I shared this with a friend of mine who’s known me for years, after she listened, she – with some kind of supernatural gentleness- suggested I consider getting my Masters in Education.
That’s not intended to be sarcastic, it may read like that but I wasn’t defensive nor did it sound like another person telling me what I should do, it was a suggestion that I couldn’t shake.
She spoke so much life into me into that brief conversation, encouraging me to consider her words and take it to Jesus praying about it.

Let it be known since I was first given the opportunity as a child to teach in Sunday school or Vacation Bible School, I knew I loved working with children and had such ease in doing so.
It was a gift that I knew I had, but often fought or diminished. In fact I ran from it. I did things here and there that worked with children, I volunteered teaching ESLto adults,& I enjoyed them for sure, but otherwise I never took it seriously. I never considered a career in teaching.
My maturity, mindset, stubbornness if you will wasn’t there yet.
The timing wasn’t right.

I wanted to do BIG things with my life.
I wanted to GO places and BE somebody.
And through a lot of trial and error,
various moments throughout the years of swimming upstream,

–  applying to several other Grad schools for several other majors,
getting in, touring the campus, and this stirring of none of it sitting well with me
despite my desire to further my education,
despite my best efforts, the degree I was pursuing
(University of Pittsburgh for Social Work,
Gordon-Conwell & Fuller Theological Seminary for my Masters of Divinity,
Eastern University for International Development) never felt right –

this year as I taught these little kids I realized they were the BIG,
as I went there and taught them day after day they were my GO,
and as I fell in love with being there with them I found my BE.

So that night after that gentle nudge from my friend to pursue my going to grad school for education, that stirring tussled my heart.
I can fall asleep anywhere, anytime, basically on command.
But not that night, no.
I tossed and I turned, and I couldn’t shake this grad school thing.
But at this point I was over it.
I was OVER applying to grad schools, getting in , touring the campus’, for what?
For it all to be for not?
Getting my hopes up just so they could be knocked back down?
Nope.
I did not want to go down that road again.
I was cranky. And I didn’t want to bother.
So I lay there with my grumpy face on, as Greg was in deep sleep probably in his second rem cycle,  I had a private conversation with the Lord.
My version of a Gideon’s blanket if you will.
That night after tossing and turning, I prayed a prayer.
I said,
” God I do not want to go through this process again.
You know full well how I’ve always wanted to further my education.
And I’ve tried and tried and tried on my own account, several times, and it never panned out
because I couldn’t ever shake how none of them felt right.
It had to be you, shutting it down.
You know the me getting carried away with my own thing each time,
I’m done swimming upstream it’s exhausting.
Please dont tease me with the prospect of going back to school, just to get my hopes crushed.
Please God make it CLEAR to me Jesus.
Send a book, a song, a person SOMETHING my way.
MAKE IT CLEAR, cause I’m done playing games
pursuing anything other than where you want me and when you have it for me.
I’m not going after this unless you send me the green light.
Like all up in my face cant miss it,
“HEY THIS IS THE ANSWER TO YOUR PRAYERS
apply to this schools grad program for education” green light.

The next day we were walking through Colonial Williamsburg with our friend and their children.
A regular part of our visits when we’re visiting this family in Williamsburg,
 and right there in the ordinary, is when God showed up and made 
a regular walk down old dirt roads extraordinary.


“Thressa?!?!” I heard suddenly and quickly looked up (because I was just looking down as I walked Lady thinking about how cute she is).

” I didn’t see you first I saw your husband, and then your dog which I only know from insta, but agh I AM SO HAPPY TO SEE YOU”!

Who is this mystery woman? Well several years ago… maybe like 6-7 years ago?
We were really close.
Her sister had come up from Virginia to do a missions trip at our church in Jersey and I got really close to her sister, her and in turn got close to her family. They welcomed me into their home and loved me so well. Then with time we just grew apart and lost touch.
But it was SO FUN to see her, there was the biggest smile on my face as memories with her family came flooding back. A part of me that Greg never knew, they knew and welcomed.

” Cindy ! Agh It’s so good to see you wow this so crazy! Wait … what are you doing here? Don’t you live in Virginia Beach” I responded as I noticed how she -years later- continues to be put together as ever, but this time she is adorned in this forest green scarf. And then I notice that the scarf is also yellow.

And as the words roll off of her tongue I begin to realize what just happened and all I can think
is ” OH CRAP.”

“I’m an admissions counselor at the College of William & Mary” she said.

We hugged each other big and briefly caught up then she went about her way and we went about ours, but it goes without saying but I will anyway,she was my green light that day.

It may not be enough evidence for you, but it was very to clear to me.
And as soon as we went our separate ways I turned to Greg and said
“Oh crap we’re moving to Virginia”.

Timing is everything. 
I did not, nor could I have, planned to run into this girl I had not seen for years.
In fact I did not see her.
She saw Greg and Lady, then found me and made her way over.
I had no clue what she was up to or where she was living.
She was just going about her business that day,
she came over to me,
and without her having any notion of the life change that was about to happen,
she, reppin’ the W& M school colors hard in her green and yellow scarf,
was the answer to the “all up in my face” prayer  I had made the night before.

Each step along the way has seemed like an overbearing obstacle that God has managed to knock down seamlessly.

What?! I need to take a Praxis Core test to get in ? Agh but I only have two weeks to study in order for my results to be submitted in time for the schools application deadline?!?!
‘That’s not enough time’ I told myself as I freaked out yet reluctantly + obediently gave it my all, burrying my head in the Praxis Core for Dummies book
while my brothers and Greg were watching movies over Christmas break.

That test seemed like an insurmountable obstacle, with terrible odds,
‘there’s no way’
‘it’s not enough time’
‘ people don’t often pass their first time’
‘if I fail I have to wait till next year to apply’
but I PASSED.
Green light.
It’s not about enough time, it’s about the right time.


And the people in my corner.
Giving their time.
To write and send out recommendation letters in time.
To help me grammar check my admissions essay.
Praying for me.
Praying for us.
Greg had never felt a peace about me going back to school,
but THIS TIME.
This time he couldn’t explain it but he was so at peace about all the open end-eds and he spurred me on.

Which leads to where my post was originally going to go.
I broke the news to my job immediately upon getting accepted into W&M, that I would be finishing up the school year, but not returning so that I could get my M.Elem Ed. and they reacted far better than I could have anticipated. They were sad to see me go, but grateful that their school was part of my story -how amazing is that -and that I wanted to better myself by pursuing my graduate degree in education.
Green light.

In moving to Virginia in May, we decided we  had to let go of something great – our 801.
Our oasis of a home.
We prayed and prayed because selling a home we’ve heard can be a long arduous process.
So only prayer was that we would break even and not owe any money.
Our realtor was prompting us to get moving in the process of selling it because ‘the market was hot’ but like what actually does that mean? I mean yes I’ve heard that on HGTV and it’s cute and all, but how true is that? Well apparently, much like I’ve learned in our lives, in the real estate market TIMING IS EVERYTHING!

We put our house on the market on Friday March 10th 2017,
– 5 years after our first date-
and received above our requested offer on Saturday March 11th.Timing people, Timing is everything.

We were flabbergasted, awestruck, and thankful.
We absolutely consider it to be a modern day miracle.
And it continues.
There are still obstacles, but among them there are still miracles.Obstacles make room for miracles.

And I say this because there are still open end-eds we face.
Where will Greg work in Virginia? Where will we live in Virginia?
Will I be able to handle the courseload? What will happen with financial aid?
I  put our lives out therefor you reader.
Transparent and step by step.
For you  to see there are still so many unknowns that lie ahead.
Truly my answers to all of those questions above are,
I don’t know.

But we’re following the stirring.
We’re following the giver of logic and the maker of time.
We’re making room for his timing, and viewing the obstacles as a chance to make room for miracles.

 

So without further adieu, we’ve gleaned so incredibly much from Lancaster.
Living in Lancaster (and in this home especially) has refined us
and we leave Lancaster far better off  then as we were when we first entered it.It’s time to prepare to say farewell to our 801 oasis, and what better way than a housecooling.

You see right now our home is a disheveled hot mess with storage bins, packing paper, and bubble wrap everywhere.
But these photos are before the fact.
These photos were taken the Thursday before our home went up for sale, so we’d like to officially and for most likely the last time welcome you into our home, our 801.
Enjoy the photos and HAPPY HOUSE COOLING.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Top 10 living in this house moments:
  1. Moving In
  2. Lady. + Speedy.
  3. Developed a lifelong friendship with Steph Raj.
  4. Restoring a lifelong friendship with Devon Key
  5. Christmas at 801. / Our house decked out for Christmas
  6. Greg turned 25 here + I turned 25 here.
  7. I fell in love with teaching.
  8. Granite counter tops, open concept, high ceilings, the front porch,
  9. Our friends and family who helped make this house a home, and didn’t hesitate to make the time for us, whether you lived close by or make the trip out to see us, the time you’ve made for us has taught us quality over quantity any day of the week .
  10. Selling

Post Author: Thressa Irving

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