My wife and I are on our fourth house. I’m not quite sure how I feel about that. We’ve been in our current home for just over a year now and we’ve been married nearly 15. And we’re both civilians, so we shouldn’t expect to relocate an average of every 3-4 years. Oh, and we’ve been in two apartments as well…
My mixed feelings… on one hand, God has been working in us and reminding us regularly that the seasons and even every moment is in His hands. We’ve been blessed with employment that has taken us from Virginia to Texas to New York and even to where we are now. On the other hand, the nostalgic side of me can’t help but thinking of our first home in the Washington D.C. suburbs.
Too big, a lot of work, and struggling to make payments, there are days where I actually miss that house. It had character and charm and, well, it was our first adventure after the wedding.
Sure, we shared an apartment for 10 months before the house. Sure, our landlord was incredibly gracious in allowing us out of our lease (without penalty!). And, sure, we made a few friends in the building where our first apartment was located. And an impact on the staff.
Houses signify man’s attempt to settle, or put down roots. It might be better said that they are an effort for us to begin to establish community. Of course, the same can be done in a nomadic setting, but it requires everyone be nomadic and, frankly, though we like the adventure, I’m not sure too many people in western civilization would embrace nomadic life.
Shelter. Provision. More easily found by staying in one place, I think.
Community, though. I’m an introvert. Deeply so. But I still feel the draw to community. It’s just not where I get pumped up with energy. On the contrary, it depletes my reserves rather quickly. In each home we lived, we tried to find community and life, investing in the lives of others and extending ourselves to make a difference in their lives. For the most part, I think we’re successful, but I understand it doesn’t happen quickly. We’ve been in our house here for just over a year. I’m still waiting.