Seven years ago, my husband and I were pastoring a church in a tiny town in eastern Nebraska. A couple years before that we had bought a repossessed modular home and set it on a basement to create ourselves a home for our family of 5. We remodeled that 1800 square foot house, having set it on a basement that we finished, built on a sunroom and had ourselves a 3,600 square foot home that was essentially brand new inside and out. We put in all new flooring, painted the walls, tiled the kitchen counters, remodeled the master bath and more – all just to the main level. The basement was a bonus level – we only needed the large laundry room we built and the rest of the floor was perfect for hosting many families and individuals over those years.
Honestly, I still dub that season as one of my most favorite in life to this point. So many beautiful memories. And some of that has to do with the fact that we had a ‘home’ – not a ‘this will do for now’ home but a ‘I could grow old and have grandkids visit in this house’ home. There was so much I loved about that house that if I were to draw up plans to build a house, I would design it very similar to that house. It was my dream house that became our cozy, safe haven.
But not long into that season, the Lord opened up a new door. An opportunity for my husband to pursue his true passion in life. Traveling to other churches in other states and nations solely to release the presence and power of Jesus. Of course, we said yes. And just months into this new season, it became quite clear that we couldn’t hold onto the pastoral position and the life (and home) that went with it – it was just too much. We didn’t feel like we could give our all to our little congregation when we were home because the next trip was right around the corner. And the house that we so loved and I enjoyed maintaining for so many months became more and more of a burden when we weren’t there much.
And so the Lord moved us on. We said goodbye to that home and hello to a tiny upstairs apartment with a makeshift kitchen. In the moment of all this, the offering up was easy. It really didn’t seem like an offering up or sacrifice at all. We were saying yes to something we had wanted for many years and that numbed the sacrifice of what we were letting go of. But as I look back, the offering up becomes more clear. My dream home. Large enough to be my forever home – to continue to raise my family in and even look forward to hosting Christmas and Thanksgiving for another generation someday in the future. But we were asked to offer it up for what the Lord had next. We said yes. Yes to the offering up of home.
***This is Day 6 of “31 Days of Offering Up” – part of the #write31days challenge. To read all the posts in order, please visit the overview page.***