I think we’re buying a new house.
This is a poignant move, as we love our house in Tempe, and we have so many people to thank for all their help with it.
My father, God rest his soul, helped so much, and it is a sort of legacy to him. My last memories of him are working on the living room floor, leveling the deck before laying the flooring. We went out to dinner with him that Saturday evening. He died very early that Monday morning. I can’t look at our floor, our level cabinets and counters, and many other things, without seeing his handiwork (often as not, marred by my own less experienced hands later).
Our dear friends, the Roes, painted and textured and worked innumerable hours beside us as we made our home here. It saddens me that I have not been able to work beside them in their Texas house. Perhaps I now understand my brother’s laments to this effect from many years ago, when his college-aged little bro spent time helping him on projects around the Indianola house. We can only ever give where we are right now. But we always get to give where we are right now, somehow, to someone. And we don’t count the cost.
Friends from Calvin church, notably John and Chris, also gave so generously to help us move into a very pleasant house. And there are many more that I probably ought to mention. Evi was born in the house.
Nevertheless, our family of seven (plus our dear friends and housemates, numbering four going on five) are filling up the 1600 square feet here. I look back and realize that we bought the house with one child ex-utero, one in-utero, and one adoption in process. That was a different time for our family. It was a joyful time, yes, but also a less-full time.
Since then, we have been further filled. We have sorrowed in many ways. We have rejoiced in many ways. We are wearied in many ways. I feel at times estranged from myself (as I suspect that my ten-years-ago or even five-years-ago self would think me now a bit odd), but also know more than ever before that Christ is the only rock and foundation of reality. Indeed, the world as we encounter it daily is estranged in many ways from its true self, which is hidden (like mine) with Christ in God.
This is aufgehoben. The swallowing up of the old good things by the new good things. I love orange blossoms – their fragrance is incomparable. But I also love oranges. The new house has lots of orange trees.
The kids are excited. They are also sad. It is good to see them joy and sorrow. I hope they will learn it better, and younger, than their father. And Lent is coming, where the greatest sorrow and joy are lived again in the Passion, Burial, and glorious Resurrection of Jesus Christ.
Christ is Risen! May He bless our new home for His service.