Thursday, October 10, 2013

When We Were Listening

Adam thought I should share with y'all this story again of our home and how we happened upon it and ended up choosing it as our "home base" for our ministry in the hood. It is for sure one of the times I have felt God speaking most clearly, and it's a good reminder to me that if I am willing to truly listen, He will speak!
"Rewind to a over two years ago. We had moved out of our house in Woodstock and were living with my parents while we searched for a house in the neighborhood we felt called to move into. We looked at house after house, driving downtown daily to meet our realtor and walk through so. many. houses. There was an investor who owned about 6 houses on the street we were interested in. These houses were in varying stages of completion in the renovation process, ranging from all-the-way-finished to shot-out-windows-with-drug-dealers-living-inside. They were all listed for the same price, based on a completed renovation. Adam and I talked ourselves in circles, going back and forth over which house we wanted and whether we should get one already renovated so we could go ahead and move in (my vote), or renovate one ourselves to save money (Adam's vote). Finally, I told Adam I was taking my pregnant-self and taking Jayci on a walk around the lake in my parents' neighborhood. And we were going to pray about what we should do.

walked waddled slowly around the lake, swallowing back the ever-present nausea as I asked the Lord what decision we should make about buying a house. Now let me make something clear. I dont feel like we would have been "disobedient" in choosing ANY of those houses, I just wanted to make a wise decision regarding what was BEST for our family and our ministry.
Somehow, in the midst of Jayci's questions and Caden's kicks in my belly, I felt the Lord nudging my spirit. The brick house on the corner, I thought. The one with broken out windows and a front porch inhabited by drug dealers and prostitutes. And for one of the only times in my life, I felt like God was telling me "that is a strategic location in the neighborhood."

So that's what I told Adam. And we bought the house. Despite knowing next to nothing about the neighborhood, how it was laid out, where kids lived, etc. And it turned out, the best way to describe the house we bought is as a "strategic location in the neighborhood." We are smack-dab in the middle of the most foot-trafficked streets, between the park and the Marta station and the corner store. And yes, that means we sometimes end up having shootings right next to our house. But it also means that it has been easy for us to meet lots of kids as they walk by and comment on our garden, our front porch. We yell out hellos as we sit on our front porch, and we thank Jesus for leading us, in every single detail.
If you visited our home now, a year later, you would probably be most struck by how lived in our house is. Not perfect, not even clean, but well-lived and well-loved. The kitchen is still the only room we've finished completely. We still dont have a vanity in our master-bathroom or a big enough table in our dining room. We've actually only completed exactly one thing from our "home goals" this year. But, if I do say so myself, we've managed to fulfill our much larger goal of creating a safe and beautiful and comfortable place to welcome our neighbors and love on the kiddos. And for that, I am grateful and thankful and happy. 


  1. love how you let God direct your steps into your neighborhood.
    you're mighty brave, girl.
    Mighty brave.

  2. A home that is well-lived in and well-loved is the best kind of home.


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