As the owner of Deborah's Guesthouses, I enjoyed living in this little hamlet for 15 years. In 1998 the Old Petersburg Operahouse sang my name—calling for me to buy and rehab it.
The next purchase was the Cottage—I could see it out my apartment window of the Operahouse after a fire greatly damaged the little house. With much help I gutted it and designed it just for me—with a sunny "greenhouse room" and open floor plan—and I enjoyed living there for about 4 years.
But then the Victorian went into foreclosure 3 blocks away, so back to the bank I went, pleading for the aging home in need of some TLC. I barely squeaked by under the wire before they clamped down on mortgage loans.
But then there I was, house-rich and money-poor. What in the world was I thinking? A favorite verse in Isaiah promises, "Your ears will hear a word behind you, 'This is the way, walk in it,' whenever you turn to the right or to the left." (Isaiah 30:21, NASB)
I believe God called me to Petersburg in 1998, and with each step I took, He was guiding me. Never would I have guessed that it was so I could provide a place for families and church groups to stay, who are visiting the Creation Museum and surrounding attractions. But what a joy it has turned out to be; I love my guests!
In the beginning I met so many in person, and now I meet them mostly online during the reservation process.
Just this spring I moved to Illinois to be near my parents and sister. It was as if God released me back to my family by sending me wonderful Christian helpers to run the business in Petersburg.
Next time I will write about the area—the proximity to the Creation Museum, as well as some other nearby attractions. Meanwhile, thanks for stopping by.