"Imagine yourself as a living house. God comes in to rebuild that house. At first, perhaps, you can understand what He is doing. He is getting the drains right and stopping the leaks in the roof and so on; you knew that those jobs needed doing and so you are not surprised. But presently, He starts knocking the house about in a way that hurts abominably and does not seem to make any sense. What on earth is He up to? The explanation is that He is building quite a different house from the one you thought of - throwing out a new wing here, putting on an extra floor there, running up towers, making courtyards. You thought you were being made into a decent little cottage: but He is building a palace. He intends to come and live in it Himself." (C.S. Lewis)
This was the reading in our bulletin at church on Sunday September 21st, 2014. That bulletin, with this reading circled, has been sitting in my desk drawer at my left-hand side since that morning. It was all-too fitting for me that day and in that season, and it was one of those powerful moments in life when I felt God so strongly that He might as well have been sitting beside me reading it to me Himself.
I debated sharing any of our news on this blog until everything was signed, sealed and delivered. Until we had our future wrapped up in a perfectly prepared package, all neat and tidy. Until we knew exactly what the package contained inside of it. But I'm learning so much right now about the need to let go of control, to let things rest in God's hands. And that life itself is not neat and tidy and predictable and if I'm going to keep a blog that is honest and true, I might as well start here. With this chapter we are in. This wild ride we've been on the last month and how it's really been a long time coming but becoming very real faster than we even thought it would.
This C.S. Lewis reading came to me in a time when I knew things were about to change. We have been preparing for a long time in many ways for this moment. But every time before when we thought we were close to making this move, it didn't feel quite right. I think we were listening too much to what we wanted, what others wanted and expected for us, and not what God wanted. And though it's far from easy, deep down in my heart I trust His timing more than I trust anything else in this world. And this past fall, as we were entering a very busy time in our lives with flag football commitments and several work trips and the holiday seasons approaching, I felt a shift in my heart. I could feel the tides changing, I could feel the pressure building and I could sense that things were about to happen. If I could describe it at all, I would say it might be what it feels like to be under the pressure of a tornado building around you. When the atmosphere changes and you aren't exactly sure what's coming and there's all this heavy weight surrounding the peace that still appears to exist but isn't lasting.
So I'm sharing here that as of this morning, there is a For Sale sign in our front yard. This afternoon, there are two showings lined up already for strangers to come walk through the walls of our home that we have built our earliest foundation on as a family. I am a mess of emotions - excited, thankful, nervous, scared and anxious. We got pre-approved for our new home the day before New Year's. We took our Christmas tree down knowing it was the last time we'd see it up in the house that Brandon and Jaden have grown up in. I sat there and cried as Brandon packaged up the ornaments, so excited to think about what our next Christmas would look like, but also sad that these earliest years as a young family have come and gone. By then, we had shared the news with the boys, and Brandon - being the sweet and sensitive Mommy's boy that he is - saw my quiet tears, stopped putting ornaments away - and came over to hold his mommy in his little arms for a good five minutes. This month of January has kind of shaken our world up, as we've prepared our home to be listed and also started shopping for our next home. A house is so much more than a house to us. It is a dwelling place that will hold memories for us forever and ever. It is where we will carry out traditions, build new ones, and grow as a family. For us, it is such an important piece of our family puzzle.
So this is where we sit now. I will share more when I feel comfortable doing so. Wish us luck as we try and sell our home. We're either in for a short but thrilling ride or a long and bumpy one. Either way, it's bound to be the ride of a lifetime. One we won't soon forget. Jesus... take the wheel.