I have so many thing to tell you I don’t know where to begin.
Sometimes your head can be full of words but your body is full of aches and pains from a week and a half worth of packing boxes and moving. So while your head really, really wants to share all that you’re feeling during this transition, your body just wants to lie on the sofa and read a book while eating leftover take out.
My body has been the boss of me the last week or so.
Because you guys, moving is so much work.
You realize it that moment when you’re half dressed but can’t find a shirt. Have a bowl of cereal poured but can’t find a spoon. Have a mug ready, but can’t find the coffee.
On the last day of school my sons got in the car and my older one held his hand tenderly to his chest and told me, “I’m just so sad.” And I looked over at him as we passed all the rows of waving teachers and friends and people and places that have been his whole world for the last seven years and I ached with him.
As I watched those blue eyes well up behind his glasses I wanted to reach over and swat away the pain and tell him that everything’s gonna be fine and he’ll find so many new friends, that one day he won’t even remember his sadness.
But today is not that day.
Today I reminded myself that crying honors the friendships that have been so dear to us.
So instead, I reached over and put my hand on top of his — right over his beautiful, strong, nine-year-old heart that feels everything so deeply and I let my own eyes spill over. And I told him that crying is good. Because crying means you’ve loved someone with your whole heart. You’ve let people into your life and your dreams and part of you will stay with them when you move and that means that part of your will have a rip in it.
Loving people means actually giving pieces of ourselves away.
And we’ve loved big in this neighborhood.
And kids love bigger than even we adults manage most of the time.
Kids aren’t stingy – they give away chunks of their hearts.
So we honored those holes on the last day of school and me and the kids had a good cry in the car and named the friends we’re going to miss.
I’m going to miss my friend Lisa so badly it deserves tears. Tears say, “I was loved and I loved you.” Tears testify to the deep, daily glory of ordinary, around-the-corner friendship. The kind of friendship that makes the ordinary extraordinary.
So we cried and then we all went out for ice cream. Because ice cream is its own special ministry too.
And then we moved.
And the moving was hard on our hearts but also on our backs and knees and shoulders and flabby thigh muscles. Moving is no joke, man.
And the day after we moved we had 4 couples over for dinner and the next morning Peter went out of town for 4 days. So yea, hence the couch and the inability between kids and boxes to find words to put down about the move.
But last night I stood out on our lawn and watched my children play with two cheap beach balls for whole minutes of squabble-free fun and I knew I was standing on the holy ground of answered prayers.
And I thought of all of you who might still be waiting for your answered prayers.
Hope can be a sort of terrifying thing can’t it?
For 10 years I have hoped and dreamed and prayed for a house with space for my kids to play and roam and explore and dig and plant and grow. So it flat out takes my breath away to see that hope realized. Because all the while we were living in tiny rental apartments and rundown rental houses God always knew last night would be coming.
Yesterday, today, and tomorrow He is always good and His timing is always perfect.
So if you’re still waiting – I wanted to just come here and let you know that I get it. I really do. The waiting. And the raging and wondering and doubting and feel frustrated and like God must be deaf.
I get it and I don’t have easy answers but I can offer to sit here with you in the waiting and let you know I hear you. I see you. I ache with you. And I also believe that God has not forgotten you. Not for a minute. He just sees the whole picture and we only have one tiny frame to work with.
Waiting is not doing nothing. Waiting is some of the hardest most faithful work that we can be called to do. You are not alone. We will all spend years of our lives invested in waiting on God. It’s good to do it together, to name our waiting so that we can’t be sold the lie that we’re the only ones still waiting. We are not.
And even if your prayers have been answered – I think that it’s OK to grieve the transition even in the midst of giving thanks for it. It’s OK to ache for the friends or seasons or places or stories that are now going to change. It’s OK to miss it and name it and give thanks for it all at the same time.
And then, when we’re ready, we can come and share more about the beauty of white paint.
Until then, I’m here between my boxes giving thanks for the glory of this place and space and new story. And also lying in bed at night with my kids as they whisper all the things they miss.
It’s both, and.
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