plant and grow us.

Thank goodness it is spring! Seriously. I went for a beautiful run this past week, and my heart overflowed with sense of renewal. Budding trees, tulips popping up, and bright sunshine just have a way of doing that to your soul.

This winter season has been weird and transient and unsettling. We could not be more thankful for the church family that God has brought us into, but that doesn’t mean that community and comfort and the feeling of home come quickly. It takes time.

We’ve been living in someone’s home, a generous place that we are so thankful for. But it is not our home. And house searching for 5 months has been exhausting, to say the least. Bryan and I love to care for our home and use it as a space of hospitality, and that part of our spirits has been completely lacking. We have been so thankful for the hospitality of others, but we’ve had to be dependent on others for many things. Not easy for us.

But now we have found a home! Really, the Lord has given us a home. It is totally not what we expected; it initially was not even what we wanted. But it is exactly what we needed. We’ve been dependent on the Lord to change our hearts and desires, and we can now look forward to moving into our home with excitement and anticipation, knowing this is exactly where we need to be!

With spring and renewal and time to finally “settle in” to life in Holland, we cannot wait to be vessels for the Lord’s blessing in our new home. When the Lord sent the Israelites to Babylon in exile, He instructed them to settle in. They would be there for a while, and He was going to plant them and grow them in that place, so that they would be vessels for His blessing. So His instructions are the prayer for my heart as we anticipate moving into our new home:

“Build houses and live in them; plant gardens and eat their produce …. have sons and daughters …. But seek the welfare of the city where I have sent you…, and pray to the Lord on its behalf, for in its welfare you will find your welfare.”

I want our new home to be a place where we are praying and living and investing. Whether that is loving our neighbors with food and welcome relationships or having an open door of hospitality for those who need it, our home is a gift, and I want it to be used as a vessel and avenue for the Lord to bless others.

So, plant us, Lord, and grow us in this new place.

Oh, and here is the newest picture of our half-baked nugget: