It’s been a crazy month, y’all.
The home buying process has been a very fun adventure. I’m definitely one to learn how to swim by being thrown in the water – it’s extremely motivating – and this endeavor has been just like that!
It’s very surreal… I’m closing on the property in two days, and officially moving in ten. And I have to be honest with you, this last week has been particularly straining. There have been a couple trials and missed deadlines outside of buying the house. Writing this, I’m exhausted. I’m feeling a bit like Bilbo when he says, “I feel thin, sort of stretched, like butter scraped over too much bread.” Normally writing rolls out from my fingers quite easily, but processing what to say is taking more effort than what I’m used to! So bear with me in this update as it may at times sound like the muttered ramblings of a madwoman. 🙂
As I mentioned, I’m closing on the house in just two days. I am both excited and a little terrified. I am told this is normal. Also, praise God, because today my lender called and told me the official price on the down payment and my monthly payments, and both were significantly less than I anticipated. This is also a relief because it means I can allocate more of my income towards completing the home in terms of furnishing and atmosphere.
After moving on the 11th, I intend to take a week or two to settle in, make sure my apartment is completely cleaned, and really just recover. After that begins the process of networking and laying the necessary groundwork to make The Haven recognizable as an official ministry.
In regards to that ministry, I am excited to talk about the future of The Haven. I have the introductory paperwork and agreement written for any young women seeking refuge. I will soon be reaching out to a lawyer as well to discuss what this type of ministry will look like, legally. The ball is rolling and, just like with buying the house, I’m learning to swim as the waters deepen.
Further down the road, in a couple years after lessons have been learned as only the teacher named Experience can give, I hope to expand the “target market” of the ministry to the church. I would like to expand The Haven to The Haven Collective.
A problem I have witnessed personally and have had others lament to me about is the lack of hospitality shown by the church. Of course we welcome all into our church’s doors, but we’re a very untrusting group of individuals when it comes to sharing what isn’t ours in the first place.
I definitely recognize this isn’t everyone. I wouldn’t be so driven to start this endeavor had I not been shown a sacrificial level of hospitality when I needed it, but it is more often the case than not that the western church clings a bit more tightly to material items that make us feel safe and secure, or avoids potentially risking something we like a certain way. Goodness, I even struggle letting my own family borrow my car. And that doesn’t even have to do with trust. They’re all safe drivers. I just don’t want to get it back with an ounce less of gas in the tank and the driver’s seat and mirrors adjusted differently from my preference.
The Haven, in addition to ministering to young women who need a place to thrive, would become a testimony to the church, a challenge to truly live as “living sacrifices” in their day-to-day lives. A living sacrifice has no materials to call their own. A disciple recognizes everything is a gift to be given. With training sessions and partnerships with the churches in the area, I hope to challenge and encourage believers who are able to “count it all as loss” and surrender the anxiety that tomorrow will not be provided for. This is merely a taste of what I have in mind – I’m already getting ahead of myself – but obviously I am very excited and wanted to share it with all of you!
As far as prayer goes, I cannot thank you enough for the prayer that has already been given towards The Haven. The process went remarkably smooth, and even in my favor. If you ask my friends, they’ll tell you that my cynicism got the better of me this last month and had me asking, “So, according to Murphy’s Law, what’s going to go wrong?” Maybe it’s time I learn to stop looking the gift horse in the mouth. 😉
Please keep me in your prayers, that I may have ample rest and energy, an outlook of grace and joy, and the experience of Christ’s peace and nearness. My levels of tolerance for inconvenience and grace towards offense has been quite low – one of my greater temptations these days is to shut people out or refuse them understanding.
Pray that God blesses the home and the future intended for it, that He may be glorified every step of the way, and His will alone be done.
And please, more than anything, join me in praising God for His grace and guiding hand thus far. He has been incredibly faithful. My next post will have to be a list of the thousands of gifts He has given to me and this ministry.
Thank you again for your support and your time in reading this. I don’t generally practice lent as it’s traditionally practiced, but I think I’m going to use lent as an opportunity to give up social media until after Easter. By that point, I should have much to share with you. 🙂
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.