Homestyle Thanksgiving: Part 2At Home

Blame it on busyness or a myriad of things … but the fact is, it has been a LONG time since I’ve written an article for Grace and Honor. In college, we learned the format for outlines included, among other things, specific guidelines. For the main headings, if there is a Roman numeral “I,” there must follow a “II”; if a subheading “A,” then a “B”; if a “1,” then a “2”; if an “a,” then a “b”; and so on. As my last article was a “Part 1,” it stands to reason that I must continue, and perhaps conclude, with “Part 2.” If only I could recall what my thoughts were the first time around!
Regardless, it is time to get up to speed. We received a portion of an inheritance left by my dear Auntie Marian just before we were to renew our lease on the rental. For one reason or another, we had never had an opportunity nor a burning desire to own our own house. Yet here was an open door, so to speak, and we began to pray for God’s choice of a house.
“For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required…” Luke 12:48
“Location, location, location” is the realtor’s motto. Several things influenced our love for our first neighborhood. To name a few, it was not in the flood plain, was quiet area located on the west side of town, and was within walking distance from our church meeting place. Thus, location became an important part of our prayer.
It seemed many of the houses we viewed had one issue or another keeping us from pursuing them. But one day … the Lord led us to our present abode. As soon as we entered, we both knew this was the one. There’s more – much more – to the story, but isn’t there always???
“Blessed be the Lord, who daily loadeth us with benefits, even the God of our salvation. Selah.” Psalm 68:19
Fast forward … it has been nearly a year since we bought our first house. Our move was made easier by the friends who pitched in as well as the fact that we only moved only a few blocks away. Since the new house was larger than the rental, and not too many things cried “Fix me!” immediately, everything found a place, although I cannot say everything stayed where it was first placed. As I see it, God must have had us in mind when He worked through our neighbors to build this house and shed. So many details that I would not nor could have thought of are such a blessing!
“Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits…”Psalm 103:2
Throughout this year, we have made some improvements and renovations as time and talent have permitted on the property, as well as the outside and the inside of this dwelling place.
“Moreover it is required in stewards, that a man be found faithful.” 1 Corinthians 4:2
For several months, another missionary friend John -- excellent with carpentry – and Jerry redid part of the flooring on our large veranda and added a lovely Merbau-and-wire balustrade. Inside the huge shed, they treated the cement floor and built an office for Jerry. Now, he has his own personal doghouse (minus the dog) *wink. It really is a wonderful quiet place in which to study, pray, and have Bible studies; he also gets his “steps” in walking across the property … 😉

Indoors, we have painted and carpeted three rooms. Debrianna especially liked the names of the paints, “Ice Princess” and “Miss Universe.” Quite befitting, I’d say! Jerry is presently making his way around the outside of the house (many times), transforming it from the classic cream-and-green country house to a classy grey with blue trim. “Grey Pail” and “Snoop” have produced a laugh even among our neighbors, who agree that we all watch out for each other.
“…give an account of thy stewardship…”Luke 16:2
Josh recently moved 10 cubic meters of Cyprus chips around the garden beds and “planted” paving stones from the house to the driveway. As they are inlaid with ground level, he can still mow. Jerry and Josh do a great job keeping the grass and hedges trim.

The other house sported no trees, but this one has many. As a result, we also enjoy several varieties and a number of birds and lizards. We won’t mention snakes, ants, mice, tree frogs, and cane toads, though. All the lessons I’ve learned from weed-pulling, too, could occupy another article. My personal attack on the weeds gave room for the real stuff – green grass – to grow. The potted plants, lavender, and roses have beautified the yard and bring a smile.

Renovating not only enhanced the house, but extended the usefulness and safety of the veranda. Laying walkways on all sides, including to the clothesline, has been practical for all seasons here.

All of this labor of love (which is a great deal of both labor and love!) is a testimony benefitting in good relations with our neighbors and others we’ve met.
“Let a man so account of us, as of the ministers of Christ, and stewards of the mysteries of God.”1 Corinthians 4:1
Twice it is said that we must be “…given to hospitality…” (Romans 12:13; I Timothy 3:2). Out of curiosity, I counted 85 separate occasions where people have signed our guestbook since we moved here. But not everyone has signed it and not every time. And of those signing, sometimes, it is a single name, but more often multiple names (recently we had 31!).

The Lord has seen fit to give us a lovely, welcoming house which already has been used immensely in the ministry here. His timing is perfect, and His choice is best.
"What shall I render unto the Lord for all his benefits toward me?"Psalm 116:12
We are grateful to be home and be at home in our home. We cannot thank the Lord enough!

Rejoicing in the Lord,


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Comments 1

  1. Enjoyed reading your article! Love the ways you have made your home more full of ways to show hospitality and a respite for yourselves!

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