Moving Day!

August 31, 2010

The long two-year journey in the crowded life-boat is nearly over.  Tomorrow marks the first time in 2+ years that Kate and I will be living in a place of our own.  Let me say that again, in a little different way: Tomorrow will be mark our first day we will live as parents in our own space.  Is that crazy?  That feels crazy.  Do other parents do that or what?  How crazy…

In any case, tomorrow morning at 10:00 am Kate and I will be heading over with the kids and a two cars filled with the first loads of our minimal earthly belongings to unpack; and hopefully, this move’s unpacking will keep for a bit longer than the five we’ve made in the last 26 months.  That’s not too big of a challenge, given that our longest stay in any one place was around 13 months.

Seems like I ought to have something profound to say or some amazing lesson I’ve learned from sharing refrigerator space and charting out who gets to wash their clothes on which days.  I know its kind of a let down–at least it is for me–but for now, I’m just excited.  But hold on, cause maybe once the honeymoon’s over and we’re being gospelled out of all the hoarding we weren’t really able to do these last two years, maybe then some nugget will emerge from the rubble.

For now though, the big question is: Will I be able to sleep tonight or will I be the wide-eyed little boy going to Disneyland in the morning?


Welcome Home?

November 29, 2008

Today Kate and I met the Youngers and Marinussens at the house below to see if it would be a good fit for the five of us to make our home this next year.  You can imagine we were pretty excited to see the place!  

Now, I know the google map is about as clear as a 1980’s mugshot, but let me assure you it looks a lot better when you’re not looking from outer space. 

Though it doesn’t really look that big from the outside, there is actually quite a large amount of space in the house (Nathan took a video tour of the place that I’m hoping to link to soon).  Besides the four bedrooms, there is also a large two car garage, a very usable open dining room/living room/kitchen, as well as a large, functional–even heated!–zolder (attic)!  Besides the space, we really loved the location.  Zoom out on the map above and you’ll see (by hovering over the blue pins) that we’ll be right next to the grocery store, bungalow (where the youth group meets), pastor (Stan and Marnie Marinussen), main bus line and church (in the next town over).   

Though place is a little old (1920’s I believe), and in need of some loving (specifically, cleaning, painting and replacing light fixtures and window coverings), we pretty much all agreed that we wanted to live in this house.  That being the case, it looks like the owner of the house will have it ready for us to rent sometime in mid-December.  

Thanks for praying us through this process.  There’s plenty left to do, and even more to pray for!  We’ll keep you posted, and hopefully have some pictures/video up soon!  


Sometimes It Gets You

October 23, 2008

Sometimes, at the most random of moments, I’ll find myself having these out-of-body this-may-be-the-last-time-I-_______ experiences.  Just the other night I was sitting at the end of the table at Vancouver Pizza Co. enjoying some pizza with the fam, when it hit me–“This could be the last time we do this before we leave…”  Not that it being the last time is bad, I guess.  Its more that it is weird.  

 Anyway, through the night I continued to replay the experience, rehearsing it from different people’s perspectives.  How would I have experienced that dinner in someone else’s, more stationary shoes?  Would I have interacted with people differently?  What things would I have said differently or not at all?  As I continued to mull things over, I got to thinking: What if I approached all of life like that?  I’m not just talking about the live-like-its your-last-day sort of stuff.  Specifically I mean, how would I live life differently if I knew today was the last time I would see a homeless person?  Or a paralyzed person?  Or someone being victimized by any of the many broken system in this broken world?  

Would their hurt effect me differently?  Would I say anything different to them?  Would I feel quite so threatened by their pain as I normally do? 

Funny the things moving around the world makes you think…

What A Smile!Something happened the minute Jude was born. Well, a lot of things happened, but there was one especially that I did not expect. Of course these last nine months Kate and I have been expecting to become parents. We have been expecting to have our lives turned upside down by this third member of our little family.  After all, what have we been working for and preparing for this whole time?

Growing up I remember getting that “It is finally happening” feeling anytime something big was just around the corner.  Whether it was a vacation, a mission trip or even just summer, there always seemed to come this moment where nothing else stood between me and whatever it was that I was about to do.

Jude made that moment happen.  It is hard to explain, but somehow the mental leap that happened when he was born seems to have catapulted us nearly onto the plane that will take us to our home these next three to five years.  The family is together, the Lord is providing the funds, we are learning the ropes with Worldventure and now more than ever we continue to prepare to leave in just a few more weeks. Though we still have eight weeks until we plan on leaving, it now feels like the moment is finally here and we are indeed, truly getting ready to move to Holland.  What a journey.

Kate and I continue to tear apart the little home we’ve made for ourselves as we take one more step in the long journey to Holland.  Right now we are probably about 2/3 done with the process.  It is amazing all the things there are to be decided on: “What do we take?  What do we leave?”  It all tends to wear on you after a while.  It is kind of weird, because I’m not sure it is the moving that is the stressful part.  I can’t quite put my finger on it, but in part I guess the stress is in the definition.  Moving is uprooting and uprooting brings uncertainty. 

In some ways moving our stuff has been a microcosm of our lives, which have ranged from chaotic to exhilerating in recent weeks (especially with Jude a little more than four weeks away!).  One thing that has been phenominal though, has been receiving support from the people around us.  Besides the actual help our support team has brought–including packing supplies, meals, actually helping us pack, etc.–there is something intangibly helpful about someone who is not going reaching out to help with our going.  It feels something like a rope being tossed to us in the middle of a overflowing stream, or a rock in the middle of a raging current.  Its almost like their stability rubs off on us for a bit and reassures us that, yes everything is going to be fine, even if things are a bit crazy just now. 

Last week I was sent a link to where I downloaded a song by Alli Rogers called “Things We Can and Cannot Keep” (listen to it here).  Here is the chorus:

What can we carry, What will stay with us

What will shine like gold when story’s told

Somethings will tarry some will turn to dust

There are things we can and things we cannot keep.

Originally inspired by a post on moving, I’ve been listening to this song over and over this week as we sift through those things we can and cannot keep.  Looking back over the journey that has brought us to this point, thank you to those of you who have made your own contributions and given us what cannot be taken away though they require nothing to keep.  You help us press on!

July Update

July 10, 2008

Be sure to meet Shey and Arto!

As we walked to the car, leaving Portland International Airport with two friends of ours from the Netherlands (Shey and Arto pictured at right) just coming to visit this month, I found myself almost experiencing reverse culture shock. The car makes, the lane width, urban sprawl, the roses, the mountains, the largeness of everything—each facet of our American (and particularly un-Dutch) life here, experienced for the first time by our visitors, reminded me of the culture shock Kate and I have waiting for us on the other side of the planet. I can already hear the Lord asking, “Who will you cling to when all your other comforts are gone?” Pray that our hearts would be malleable as God continues to fit us for the ministry he has for us!

As of July 4th Kate and I have officially begun to pack up our duplex so that we can be fully moved out by the end of the month. Hardly having begun the process, we are already indebted to our Advocates! You are gathering boxes, setting up garage sales, volunteering to clean our duplex and store our stuff, and, and, and! A huge thank you to those of you who have already proved so helpful! It is awesome to see the Lord drawing his church into the building of his kingdom! Be sure to visit to find out how you can be involved or to join an Advocacy Team if you aren’t on one yet. Also, keep visiting for weekly updates and prayer requests. Thanks again for your support!

As our different Advocacy Teams are getting up and running, keep your ear to the ground for more information on when we will be starting monthly prayer meetings. Until then please join us in prayer for the requests listed at right.

We would love to hear from you—email, phone or comment on the blog any time! God bless you as we continue on in to the summer!

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