In about 45 minutes yesterday afternoon we signed our names a hundred times, handed over a really big check, and got some new keys for our keyrings. We drove home and wandered around an empty house for a few hours--sorting through paint and other strange things the previous owners left behind.
I really, really love this house--so much character and so much potential. I stood in the living room and envisioned deep, comfy couches, a roaring fire, a pot of tea, some friends, and knitting. Dad's providing the firewood, knitting is always at the ready, friends and couches will come sometime in the future...
And in the way of things, in the midst of being so excited, Toben and I got completely off-kilter talking about where furniture should go and what kinds of things the house needs. I tend to think out loud and say things like, "I think a small sectional would go here and a bigger one there, and a new oven would be perfect (the one in the house is yukky!), and wouldn't area rugs be nice?" All he hears is me spending every last penny we have. I tried to explain that I'm just dreaming out loud, and that I'm not proposing we transform the house in a week like a makeover tv show. But we still ended up on opposite sides of whatever it was that seemed so important at the time, and it colored the whole experience gray.
Why does that happen all too often?
I've been reading Ephesians this morning, and am struck by the idea of unity and peace--something we'll continue to need as we paint together today (another project we approach differently) and move later on in the week. I'm glad God is a god of do-overs, and am praying for a fresh start the moment we walk in our new front door later this morning.
I do love St. Paul. I know he often gets a bad rap, but I see in him a desire for order that I can relate to so well. I envy his vision of seeing things in a broad perspective, an eternal perspective, as I so often get caught up in the narrowness of the moment, my immediate feelings, and the sense that as things are right now they will be forever.
Here are some of the verses that stood out to me this morning:
Be very careful, then, how you live--not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity. (5:15-16)
Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. (4:2)
For he himself is our peace... (2:14)
And I've always loved a good benediction--and this is one of my favorites:
Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. (4:20-21)