About a year and a half ago, Dane and I purchased a three bedroom, two bath cabin in the woods. Hardwood floors, stone fireplace, huge front porch, on land…. Sounds like a dream, right? Did I also mention the 1970s kitchen, two-tone paint on the outside, outdated bathrooms, and swimming pool full of dirt?! No, I am not joking. The swimming pool was filled in with dirt and had a dead tree in the middle of it.
So, why did we decide to purchase what we affectionately call “The Project House?” Because as we drove down the driveway to this secluded little dwelling, it inspired us. We could see the potential and knew this place needed someone to love it—dirt pool and all! So, we bought it, ordered a dumpster, and got to cleaning.
Why am I telling you this? Because I want you to realize that your “dream” may be packaged differently than you expect. Sometimes, we must look past the dirt, the ugly, the outdated, to see the beauty that is just waiting to be uncovered. The old-fashioned bathroom can be changed. The dated, worn-out vanity can be replaced with a new furniture style vanity, adorned with an incredible mirror and beautiful accessories. The two-tone paint can be painted over and the swimming pool full of dirt can be turned into a gorgeous pond, with a little bit of effort.
But that’s the problem, right? The effort. I have to put forth the effort to create a different dream, a new dream for myself. And sometimes, I just don’t want to do that. I mean, if money were no object, this is not the house that I would have picked. It certainly wasn’t the “dream home” I had pictured in my mind. But I’m glad we bought it because we are turning it into a lovely home.
Life can be like this, too. If God had allowed me to decide, this probably isn’t the life I would have chosen. My “dream life” was in Oklahoma, with a husband, two kids, a dog, and a cat. We lived in a traditional home. I was a stay-at-home mom or a teacher and my hubby had an office job. My “dream life” was simple. No infertility struggles. No ugly. No effort.
But I’m sure glad God didn’t let me pick. Because this life—this difficult, sometimes ugly, nearly always effort-filled life—is turning out quite beautifully.