ordering the home

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I heard this song last week while watching Shauna Niequist’s launch party for her book Present over Perfect that releases tomorrow.  I can’t stop singing it.  It made me cry because Brandon and I have been in the process of looking for our very first home.  We have been renters for 10 years and have saved a downpayment many times only to have to spend it on hospital bills, pregnancies, and obscene amounts of car trouble.  It has been a long and rocky road, requiring a ton of trust and patience in the Lord’s plan and timing.  I am probably more comfortable with waiting at this point than we are with moving forward.  It has become normal and it feels safer.

Our lease is up at the end of this month on this rental we’ve been in for the last two years, and our landlord is only willing to sign a six-month lease rather than going month-to-month, so we are back on a holding pattern somewhat, it seems.  I trust the Lord’s timing and am thankful that I don’t have to hurriedly pack up a house during this month meanwhile starting my very first year of homeschooling with Phoebe.  My sanity is thankful.  But my heart longs to have a place that I have the right to call home.  We’ve always lived in borrowed spaces and, as grateful as we are for our many many blessings, that does take its toll after so many years.

Anyway, I’m hoping I can sing these words over our new home one day soon.  Until then, we call this temporary place our home.  It teaches me time and again that my place here in this world is ultimately temporary and God is preparing for us a Home that will be everything our hearts have always been restless for.  The longing is piercing, but it isn’t bad to be reminded of the reality of the tension we live in.  We really were made for a better place, the paradise of His presence and His perfection, and our souls know our exile.

So it’s been on my heart to get our house in order.  Things tend to pile up and clutter when you have three little ones.  Mentally I need to quiet the home, declutter, take care of the piles gathering dust here and there, minimize and sell what we don’t need or use.  I want to carve out a small space in the home for schooling supplies to make a special little spot for Phoebe.

Phoebe and Noah have been sharing a room since Noah was 3 months old, and they have pretty much loved every minute of it.  Philippa has been in her own room.  For a long time, Phoebe and Noah have been party animals at night after lights are out, usually coming out to go to the bathroom a handful for times, plus giggling and jumping around out of their beds.  Noah seems to be the rabble rouser, and Phoebe, on the healing journey with an autoimmune disease, is the sleepier one who tends to drag during the day because of the late night shenanigans.  So we decided to separate them, putting Noah in his own big boy room for the first time, and moving Philippa into Phoebe’s room.  Noah and Philippa are little BFFs and if we put them together, they would only keep up the late night party pattern.  So, last week we moved beds and furniture around.  The kids thought it was great fun, and they’ve been sleeping well in this new arrangement.  Noah was a little scared the first night all on his own, but I think he was really proud of himself in the morning and I think as the second-born/middle child, it feels really special to have his own room.  We’re still working on moving decorations around and finishing up, which seems sort of silly if we may end up moving soon, but I’m feeling the need to get the house in order and organized as much as possible before school begins.  Everyone keeps telling me its only kindergarten and it is really no big deal, but I know it will be adding a sizable chunk to my weekly workload and I will feel more prepared going into it with house projects crossed off my list.

In an ideal world, at least.  😉  Everything is in disarray and disorder for now.  I try to make a few small goals a week toward this end, keeping up with all my usual weekly work keeping a home running, always working toward order, and learning to enjoy the inevitable chaos.


4 thoughts on “ordering the home”

  1. A bit of encouragement… My husband Matt and I were experiencing those same feelings for over ten years; ten years of wishing/hoping/longing to set roots down deep and being disappointed. There were many times where I wanted to rush things- we’d go house-hunting, we’d look in rooms and walk perimeters, we’d dream and I’d mentally move things over…we’d try to find a way to make it work and it may have but we eventually talked ourselves out of it. It seemed too forced. Each door was closed, each stockpile of money spent. It will be 4 years since we moved into our very own home this October. And it is perfect (for us)…not at all perfect, not even close. But it is ours and we love it. I drive those same streets and pass those same houses that I used to pray that the Lord would provide permanence for us through and I thank God He didn’t make those houses work. I thank God that they weren’t ours and my prayers weren’t answered in the way I wanted back then. It is a strange thing to long so strongly for something and then to find yourself so RELIEVED you never got it. The house too close to the road for my bevel of bumpkins, the lot too small for my farmer-husband. The house in a flood plain and it has flooded several times since we were looking. Even those ‘perfect’ houses we had been praying for- pale in comparison to the goodness God gave us when he planted us in the one bathroom, creaky floorboards and paneling-covered home that we love. Since we have moved here we have done a tremendous amount of work and it is exhausting and overwhelming sometimes (often!) but again, it is ours. I say this to you because one day you will find yourself in a home of your own and your appreciation of said home will be exponentially more having waited for so long. Take it from someone who knows. And also, the Lord is allowing you to wait not because He doesn’t hear your pleas but because He has the perfect thing for you at the perfect time and is in the process of getting you there. Take it from someone whose heart-longings were exceeded beyond my wildest expectations. You will find yourself in a place, when the Lord gives you a place to dig your roots down deep, thanking Him for the wait- but it only comes after the wait.

    I think you have a wonderful mindset as you wait on the Lord. Bloom where you are planted! Decorate where you live! And get your house in order. And thank God through it all because He has it all figured out- and you’re gonna love it.

    1. I know your response wasn’t for me, and I’m not even in this particular situation… but thanks so much for your encouraging words, Rebecca! What truth. God knows our needs before we do, and when we prayerfully wait, and things come to fruition, we see WHY it was worth trusting in Him, and waiting.
      Martha-I truly enjoy your blog! You are inspiring, and have such a beautiful family. I even hunted you down on Instagram. Thanks for sharing… I have several “Sisters” who blog and mentor me in ways they’ll never know! Also-I have read “The Light Between Oceans” as well…great novel!

      1. Hey Janie! How fun that you read along here! Thank you for your kind words. Yes, I really enjoyed “The Light Between Oceans” even though it made me cry. Blessings to you!

    2. Thank you for these words, Rebecca! I loved reading your story and being reminded of how faithful our God is. And the last few lines left me just grinning. It gives me a lot of hope to hear at this particular time that your hopes were far exceeded in your own home-buying process. Isn’t that just like our God?

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