It was blurry and raining. I’d been up since 5, getting 12 more hours of work in.. We needed to be on the road before dark, snow was coming, and we had to make it through a pass… It was a 4 day journey back to Chicago, and I wasn’t at all near ready, on so many levels.
The last day in our house was hectic, messy, wet, cluttered, joyous, teary, and filled with a whole lotta love. One last shower, one last cup of coffee while watching the sun come up. One last devotion with a view of the sound. One last Duffy party..
Its hard to describe how wonderful the world can be sometimes… When we’re clouded by hateful news, filthy streets, sour attitudes, and more corruption than would seem possible, its such a blessing and relief to see love present, through the clouds. Through the smoke, past the fire. On this last day of our Seattle adventure, about 30 of our closest friends showed up, to lug boxes up and down stairs, pack our truck, take apart shelving, clean out the fridge, and even touch up some painting.
The house wasn’t perfect, but the home surely was.
When we were making our plans to move to Seattle 3 years ago, my health was kind of sketchy. I still had a lot of pain. Swelling. Fatigue. When we saw this house come on the market, we put an offer in the next day, without even having seen it. We knew it was the one. The balconies. The view. The sunsets. The gated driveway in the backyard for the kids to play. Places for me to sit and rest, and depending on the time of day, with coffee or wine in hand. Watching the excitement on the water. Waiting for a painful day to pass. A tired day. A feverish day.
If I was going to be stuck home often, I was going to be blessed with this amazing view, to carry my troubles away.
We knew the house was going to be popular, so we wrote a letter to the sellers, explaining how much we loved the house, how we could see our family grow there and make it a home.
Funny enough, we basically got the same letter from the couple buying the house from us. Imagining the sunset, riding bikes on the back driveway, playing in the basement, growing a family… They one-upped us though and included a picture of their family (why hadn’t I thought of that?!). I spent some time mulling that letter over, torn by what it meant. Was the house really all that special? Did the roof and the view and the extra space, really create that overly joyous excitement for a family?
No. Having lived there, it was never the house that made it a home for us. It was the Spirit that made a home for us in that house. We’ve been washed and sanctified, and died, to live, to tell. A life worth living, worth sharing. So we welcomed that Spirit in, to guide us, to lead us to places of discernment. Places of truth.
We pray the next family will too.
The Spirit brought many people under that roof, numerous times over the years, for many different reasons. We pray it continues. The Spirit filled the place with laughter and fellowship. We pray it continues. The Spirit stopped us to pray when needed, and worship when we were together. We pray it continues. The Spirit is present where he is welcomed, and his presence is undeniable.
The Spirit brought us a family to take our place. One that could picture the same things we did before we moved in. A family with growing kids that will settle in and find the same joys and quirks that we did while we lived there. There were times I wondered why I stopped to pray over various rooms of the house. I’ve come to know that its not my place to question what the Spirit leads. Its not for me to know why. But a home was made in that house and will be made again soon. And its covered in a whole lot of prayer. The Spirit is ‘in da house’.
A whole lot of love went into and filled that great big ole house. Even though I take so much of that with me, that Holy Spirit can fill any place its welcomed. Completely fill, no little and no less. I truly hope and pray, that house continues to embody what it means to be a home. Where love is found and memories are made. Where the Spirit of the Lord is truly welcomed, and its presence unmistakable, to all that enter in to it.
Our deepest and sincerest thank you’s to our forever Seattle family, our FVC family, and our Des Moines neighbors. We truly had a wonderful life out there, because of the wonderful people that surrounded us. We can’t thank you all enough, for all the hard work you afforded us, your time, your love, your patience and grace. We wouldn’t be who we are today, or strong enough for our next journey without you. We love you, and miss you guys so much!!
Bye Bye Greenhouse, and may many blessings be yet to come!