It’s a Saturday morning and I’m home ALONE for a few hours. My sweet man is off serving a family in need of some yard/house maintenance with a group of people from our church and I was laying in bed two hours after he left. While many people would struggle with feeling “guilt” – quite honestly, I was ok with the plan. I’m tired – it’s been a crazy season at work and in our family and I feel TOTALLY content knowing that I was supposed to be right where I was today – HOME.
I was just sitting down to do some journaling/writing and the doorbell rang. Instead of being “annoyed” and hiding so no one could see that I’m at home, I jumped up to pull on a little more clothing (still in PJs) and made my way to the door. I was giddy that we had “visitors”!
You see, we recently made a move to a new area and I’m missing people “stopping by” or being the “hostess” to friends and family. The move wasn’t our idea or plan (we were leasing our home in Plano and the owners, dear friends, needed it back to sell to a family member). While we are THRILLED for the family now living there, the 60 days notice to vacate came at a rough time and was a shock.
While I can EASILY point to God’s faithfulness and His goodness to us (in how He provided and how it’s worked out), we packed up and moved from Plano (our home town, basically, since the late 70’s) and moved to MCKINNEY…and I came “kicking and screaming”! I made it clear to God (and anyone willing to listen) – “I’m a Plano Girl…I’ve never even LIKED McKinney! WHAT IS HAPPENING!?!?”
God – who provided a sweet little house that we are making our home.
God – who gave us friends from church that just happened to have a home for lease and that worked with us on timing, etc.
God – who is teaching us to use the extra 20-25 minute commute to be intentional with Him or connecting with others.
God- who gave us a new neighborhood to love and neighbors to get to know.
(Water tower that is a reminder, every morning, of where we now live…and a sweet “Welcome to McKinney” gift bag and dinner from my sweet friend Connie!)
So- back to this morning and the ringing doorbell.
As I approached the door I could tell “who” was on the other side. A beautifully dressed group of women (turned out to be 3 generations…Grandmother, Mother, 12 year old daughter) who were eager to hand me a brochure and tell me that they just wanted to give me something to think about…
“What is the key to happy family life?”
While we were talking, I looked across the street and could see another group of individuals (with the same plan/agenda) standing at the doorstep of the neighbors that we have been “meaning to walk over and get to know”.
For WEEKS now (since the first day we moved in), Tom and I have discussed how we really needed to make some cookies or do something and “walk the neighborhood” and get to know the families around us. While we have met a few, I had NOT made it across the street and CERTAINLY had not taken the time to do any cookie making (well, at least not for the neighbors). UGH.
What an example these women, at my door, were to me (as well as the group across the street!). While our beliefs/faith will certainly not be the same, THEY were the ones using their Saturday to get out and meet their “neighbors”. They were the ones boldly going door to door (yes, with an “agenda” but, still). They were the ones who were warm and gracious to those willing to open their front door.
After we chatted for a few minutes, the lovely grandmother said, “I know you weren’t expecting us TODAY but maybe we could come and chat with you some other time?”
I thought about how much I LOVE having people in our home…I thought about how much I’ve been missing playing “hostess” (meaning – offering friends a water bottle or coffee and whatever is in the pantry…not that I claim to be the “hostess with the mostess” with amazing food choices and perfectly kept interior!). I thought about how I want our home to be a safe and comfortable place for ANY ONE that comes our way…even those that might think and believe differently that we/I do. I thought about how I had prayed, JUST YESTERDAY, for opportunities to get to know people in our new “home town”.
I replied with, “You know what…I would LOVE that! You are welcome in our home ANY time.” I gave them my scheduled and promised to answer the door any time they wanted to stop by.
Before they walked away I added, “And to answer your question about “What is the key to a happy family life?” – my answer is Jesus!” The older woman smiled and said, “That’s a GREAT answer! Can’t wait to talk more about that with you.” I grinned and said, “Me too!”
And now I’m off to bake some cookies…that couple across the street – yeah, they are going to get another set of neighbors reaching out to them today!
#Wait #MaybeIWillRunAndGetTheNewBluebellToTakeToThem 😊 #WayBetterThanMyCookies #IAmNoEllenEllwood <-She Makes the Best Chocolate Chip Cookies Around!
Oh, and just fyi – if you HAVE to move…
it’s really awesome to have great friends that help!!