Reflecting on the First Year

A whole year yall!  What a milestone – what a journey! 

I added a brief One Year Update overview on the “About Us” page.  This is probably part one of a more reflective look at the last year.

I, for one, am amazed we have made it this far given the rollercoasterness (yea, I just totally made that word up) of the year.  We said we knew the first year would be the hardest.  Who’da thunk we would have had so many additional obstacles?!  Not that we didn’t think (and talk!) about quitting a few times, but we reminded each other of the goal in mind, waited on the Lord, persevered and overcame.  Thank you Jesus! 

Psalms 127:1
Unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain

It hasn’t been just about building a house.  It’s about building relationships, building our Faith.  It’s been about building our character.
I really, seriously, absolutely (can I emphasize it just a little more?) do not understand how we made it through the year financially.  The numbers just do not add up.  Not in building materials.  We received a lot of donations and gifts.  I’m talking about the day to day living and bare minimum bill paying.  To say that we had to rely on Him for all things would be an accurate statement.  And just when we needed it the most, He provided.  Over and over again.  HE truly has built this house – through Mr., through all the blessings from those around us.
The best and the worst of all of us have come out during the last year.  Not only are others shortcomings shown bright, so are your own.  Which let’s be honest, is the hardest pill to swallow.  When life is going along its predictable pattern you can compensate or hide away.  Perhaps the ladies would retreat to the kitchen or bath, men to the shop or the TV.  There is nowhere to inconspicuously “hide away” when your camp building and living tiny – if you’re going off to hide, it is an obvious, deliberate act that can be done positively or negatively.  We are forced to deal with each other and the issues at hand, to compromise with different personalities, to compensate, to extend Grace, learn to accept that that conflict doesn’t always come to an immediate resolution.  And it’s not always a bad thing.  We have to be simultaneously dependent on the Lord and each other, yet be independent, to step up and out and do things we are not used to doing.  Your weaknesses come out – but so do your strengths.  And others will notice, and rely, on those strengths. 
Seriously – if you think it’s just building a house, prepare yourself for some serious character building as well.

Proverbs 16:9
The mind of man plans his way, But the LORDdirects his steps.

We had a plan.  A simple, easy to do plan.  The Lord had many tests and lessons for each of us and made us step a lot slower than we had wanted.  A hard lesson for me to learn was during those times I felt He was silent, He was working behind the scenes.  Waiting for that perfect moment to bring about the next thing.  Sometimes it was waiting on us to relinquish control.  Other times, as I learned, it wasn’t about us at all!   But waiting for an outside our family unit thing to fall into place.  Imagine that one – our house isn’t all about us!  I totally should have learned that lesson during our Texas Adventure… call me a slow learner. I hope I got it now. 
We still have a lot of house (and probably character building) to do but I feel much more capable.  We have built a house – and we have not just survived, but learned how to thrive and hopefully, be more content in all things.
If you are building or thinking about building or are even in the planning stages – just know that sometimes it gets hard.  Really hard.  In ways that you can’t plan for.  Keep your heart on Him and your eyes on the prize.  
It is so worth it! 
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