Parade of Houses
The big-ticket items on our calendar are behind us but it doesn’t feel like things have slowed down at all. The Parade of Homes was a wonderful experience but it was super exhausting. I want to welcome all of you who signed up on our e-mail list at the Parade and thank you for coming alongside us to realize our vision. Overall the time at the Parade was very positive. We had a beautiful house to display thanks to Kahler Homes and I met so many great people. I love telling our story and helping people see how the Lord is calling us to cultivate home for the homeless. One thing that stuck out to me is that the Parade of Homes event is really a showing of beautifully crafted houses, but its the people who come to live inside that make the home. Home has to be cultivated and cared for and it is our prayer that every one of the houses on the Parade will be a place that fosters community and relationships.
After 6 days of talking I am tired! The most draining part was fielding the comments and questions that were not so nice. Each time it happens, I have to remind myself that I came from a place of total ignorance to the plight of the homeless and I was the chief of all naysayers. It reminds me of the beginning of Titus 3:3 when it says, “For we also once were foolish ourselves” Ouch! It’s tough to swallow that sometimes but it humbles me and helps me to be gracious to others who have never had the opportunity to learn about homelessness. I was fortunate enough to have some people take me under their wings and educate me, so it is my privilege and duty to pass that on.
Progress continues to be made on finalizing our land. We received some new drawings from our architecture firm and are scheduling a meeting with the Space Port Board to talk about a needed variance to build residences within the AOZ4 (space port zone). I met with the Oil and Gas operator who has the lease on our surface tract to discuss our plans and had a very productive meeting. We are preparing to survey the land and propose a road to the County.
I planned on getting a little rest on Monday and then hitting all of this pretty hard but a wrench got thrown into my plans. Truma got sick and in turn so did I. I’m just now getting over the soreness of my back procedure which went great and now we have the standard West Texas virus crud. I did get to go out on the breakfast truck yesterday before I started feeling bad. A friend had collected some sleeping bags and tents which we were able to get out to some of our most vulnerable friends which was great! The rest of the time on the truck was pretty normal until we went to a newer tent encampment.
The kids out there are around 20 years old and pretty recently homeless. They haven’t yet been seasoned by the hard knocks of the streets and that bulletproof young adult attitude sometimes gets the best of them. They have not been out there long enough to realize that the independence and freedom of the “lifestyle” isn’t as great as they think it is. I have heard bits and pieces of their stories and as usual, the common thread is the broken family. One guy shared with me that his father had been murdered when he was young. He ended up homeless after his family slowly fell apart. He told me that he was robbed of his childhood and so now he was going to enjoy life. Sadly he is seeking fulfillment in drugs and trying to numb the pain of his tragic past and I think the others out there are too. Please pray for them. Drugs and addiction are insidious monsters and watching them slowly take hold is very sad. I am eager to continue developing the relationships with them and sharing the hope of Christ that is in me.
We officially booked our tickets to visit our family in Asia. We realize that we are crazy for taking Truma and Titus with us but we are going for it and super excited. It is going to be a big culture shock for us I am sure but we are pumped to see what the Lord has called W and M to. We miss them a lot and it’s so awesome to officially have the trip on the calendar.
God continues to grow and stretch us, oftentimes beyond what we are able to handle alone. This ride we are on is both exciting and scary but God has made his presence known the whole way. I would continue to encourage you to seek out the purposes for which He made you. You are His masterpiece and what you do with your life is significant to the Kingdom of God.
· Continued prayer for our niece Hannah and her journey with Tuberous Sclerosis Complex.
· Friends suffering from addiction.
· Rest and healing from the virus that Truma and I have.
· Upcoming meetings with the Space Port Board and County
· Friends on the streets as the temperatures begin to drop. Specifically James, Robert, and Renee.