It was just the two of us as we climbed the stairs and lingered in the halls and rooms. For some reason, it felt important to spend some time there together without our kids. We talked about where we'd put the furniture, what pictures would look cool on this wall and that, how the granite joints in the kitchen counters need a little smoothing, and how we'll have to buy a new kitchen table since the one we have is too big. And while we were there, we may have shared a hug and kiss or two as well.
It was a good time but strangely bittersweet.
Though this appears to be what God has for us, honestly it isn't what we would have chosen, nor is it where we thought we'd be at this stage of our journey and life together. It's not that it's wrong or that it isn't right, it's just that it's different and in many ways, it just doesn't feel real.
I told my man the other night as we lay in bed, "You can punch me if you want for saying what I'm about to say, but this new house... this new season... it still doesn't feel real to me and I still don't understand it." And then, of course, he playfully punched me in the arm because after months of praying and listening and decision-making you'd think I'd get it by now but I just don't.
Don't get me wrong, this brand new, waiting-to-be-filled-with-life house is beautiful and I'm grateful for it and I really do love it. It's just that it all feels strangely unfamiliar, somewhat awkward, and very surreal. Looking back, I realize that every one of our moves, every new house, and every other giant leap of faith we've taken has also, at the time, felt the same and I've wondered both inwardly and outwardly, "Are we really living this? Is this really the next step?"
The answer has always been yes and the answer is still yes. Yes, we are living this and yes, it is the next step and just like all the times before, God is with us... guiding, leading, providing and continually loving us.
Now if I could just wrap my heart and head around it all...
But I know that's not really the point and it's probably not even possible. (smile)
There's another story, another layer to our journey that I may have alluded to but haven't written much about since some things are better kept close to the heart. It's a story that bears a great deal of desire and longing, years of hoping and praying and walking with God, disappointment, and what feels like lost dreams. It's a story we're having to come to terms with as we move into this new season and no doubt that adds to the "strangely unfamiliar, somewhat awkward, and surreal" and makes it harder to embrace and understand what lies ahead. In the coming to terms, my heart keeps returning to this passage from "Jesus Calling" by Sarah Young. It brings me comfort and helps me move ahead, one step and day at a time....
"Trust me one day at a time. This keeps you close to me, responsive to My will. Trust is not a natural response, especially for those who have been deeply wounded. My Spirit within you is your resident Tutor, helping you in this supernatural endeavor. Yield to his gentle touch; be sensitive to his prompting. Exert your will to trust Me in all circumstances. Don't let your need to understand distract you from My Presence. I will equip you to get through this day victoriously, as you live in deep dependence on Me. Tomorrow is busy worrying about itself; don't get tangled up in its worry-webs. Trust Me one day at a time."
"And you take my hand and you guide me on,
and you show me the way to life.
And you lift my head and you give me hope,
and you show me the way to life."
~from the song "Who Can Compare?" by Jesus Culture