The Year We Lived in…The Shed

The Shed-Insulation and siding installation day 1/7/11

A year ago today, we moved back into our house after living in an old shed for a year.

The shed wasn’t livable by American standards.  It didn’t have a stove to cook on, a kitchen sink, cabinets for dishes, heat for the winter, insulation to protect from extreme temperatures, a washer or dryer,  nor a closet to hold our clothes.  It was literally an old one room shed with no amenities.

Moving into a shed wasn’t something we had ever planned or ever thought up in advance.  Maybe I should tell you how it all started…

Dale and I had dreams for a couple of years of bunk beds all through our house.  We even saw bunk beds in our dining room.  They were random dreams that didn’t make a bit of sense to us.  And all the dreams ever consisted of was bunk beds filling our house.

One day I got a call from my friend, Ronnette.  She was asking for prayer for a need she had.  Her need:  cheap housing for 21 in-training missionary girls. And they needed it in less than a month. While she was telling me about it, the bunk bed dream flashed before my mind.

I asked her if I could call her back.  I got off the phone, ran outside to where Dale was, and told him of Ronnette’s need.  Then I told him I saw the bunk bed dream flash before me while I was on the phone and asked him if we could let the girls live there.  He paused for maybe a half a second.  His expression didn’t fluctuate.  Very sure and steady, he said “Sure, but where would we live?”

My body got ready to run back to the house for the phone.  But I stopped myself, and I said, “I don’t know…I’m going to call Ronnette back!”  We didn’t even know where we’d live, but we knew this was a fulfillment of the dreams…and how exciting was that!

The next morning, Dale and I discussed our only living option: the old shed on the front of our property. Most Americans would never ever consider the shed livable.  But we saw its potential.  It was built in the 1870’s and was 416 square feet.

So, this is how it all began…and we lived happily there for a whole year.  Don’t get me wrong.  There were adjustments and minor sacrifices, but it was the greatest adventure of our life.  Every month unfolded a brand new adventure, and through it all we were filled with indescribable peace!  We learned to live a radical lifestyle, and our spiritual reservoir overflowed in ways we never could have imagined.

What a year we lived!  I’m actually writing the whole story of what happened every month, so that I don’t forget one lesson and so that others can glean from what we learned.  You never know.  There could come a day that God asks you to do something radical.   Will you know when it is Him?  Will you be obedient?  Will you be ready for the adventure of your life?

The Glasgow House, Circa 1920

Our dining room became a bedroom for 6 girls.  3 bunkbeds filled this room


Our living room

  • Joy said:

    Sharon, your stories just continue to call me to a deeper walk with the Lord. Yes...I want radical obedience. Yes...I want the adventure of my life. Currently the Lord is asking a very difficult obedience of me and it is beyond hard, but I'm longing to follow fully.

    I just love your heart...and I know God does too. I'm sure you never viewed the relinquishment of your home as sacrifice, but willing surrender to the Lord who gave His all for you.

    PS. Keep the stories coming!!!! :-)

    • I love you Joy! You encourage me so much, it motivates me to write my stories. Thank you!

  • Helen Tank said:

    Sharon, I found your blog...I love the shed story....I knew the moment I met you that we would be fast friends.....I hope hope hope that you will make it back to Fl. in the future and that we an spend some time together....Keep doing what you do. You are a blessing....

    • Thank you Helen! I knew we would be fast friends too:). I'll let you know when I'm near your part of Florida again, we'll ahve a lot to catch up on!

  • Shirley said:

    I enjoyed your story. God blesses us with some material things it a house or a pool or whatever and it is to be used to glorify him. We are blessed each time we share what we have with others. It all belongs to Him anyway...... This story also confirms my feelings that we can live with a lot less. I'd love to know what life changing things you learned during that year you were in the shed.

  • Shirley said:

    I am looking forward to hearing some stories you have about living in the shed. I really think that must have been an awesome adventure.

  • Serena said:

    Sharon. That is an amazing story! I assume that you are talking about the little building that had the old gas pumps?? I always thought that was a cool little building. What an experience! You always challenge me.

    • Thank you Serena! It's the small old building next to the one with the gas pumps.

  • Heather Marcotte said:

    It is an honor to call you guys our friends.We love your heart and obedience.

    • It is an honor to call YOU guys our friends too. I love you!

  • Barbara said:

    Oh Sharon, what an amazing story! I've had dreams like that, but haven't walked them out yet. Oh Lord, I hope that I can do what you are calling me to do. If I told you, you would might think it's crazy. I know my husband thinks so, but I sense at the proper time that God will unfold His plan and we will walk in it. (Oh how I desire to fulfill the things that Jesus has pre-planned for me to do! I don't know how because I can't do them of my own accord.) Thanks so much for sharing your encouraging story. All because of a dream?? How nuts is that? And yet, God does speak in dreams. Wish you lived closer. Love ya, Barb

    • I wish I lived closer tot Barb! God is amazing!

  • Barbara said:

    Oh Sharon.... and I can't imagine how you could live somewhere without a stove, washer/dryer, no heating, insulation, etc. etc. etc..... How did you and your family do this??? It had to be Jesus. Love your love for Jesus.

    • I'm writing a book about the whole adventure, right now!! so you'll be able to read all about it!!