(clarification for the dim - we're not living in the Liver Buildings)
It’s been nearly two weeks since I wrote from Auckland airport – sorry. Travelling back to the UK was OK – I had Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince to keep me company (the book that is!), as well as the extensive choice of film, TV and CDs that Singapore Airways offer on their intercontinental flights (they get the big thumbs up from me!).
Ines and the kids were at the airport to meet me which was great and we headed home – not to a week of R&R as I wanted, but to a week of packing up and getting ready to go, which is what we needed.
It’s been fairly painful – packing up, throwing out and giving stuff away. Its amazing how attached I felt to books I’ve hardly looked at in a couple of years, breathtaking how hard it was to give my much neglected guitar to someone and just all round testing to throw our home open to anyone from church who wanted to come and help themselves to our books, toys, tools, etc. Soon someone is coming to take the furniture.
Within a week, our home was undone and has simply become a house again. The stuff that we are shipping fits into 6 suitcases (admittedly 2 of them are the largest things I’ve ever seen and it is a good job that they have got wheels otherwise you’d need several weightlifters to move them!). It got to us all – a bit like pulling at the thread of a favourite jumper – our home, unravelled before us as we took down pictures, threw out things that we knew would be of no use, restocked charity shops with clothes, books and other things that would be of use but that we could find no legitimate reason to ship to the other side of the world.
God called us to Leicester, we had a real sense that he wanted us in the house we’ve lived in for the last 5 years and have seen him answer prayer time and time again, as we’ve lived in the centre of a community that is desperately in need of more Christians involved in it. Now the house is reduced to a shell we are desperate for it to sell. Please do pray that the house would sell in the next couple of weeks – we are confident that it will sell, God has provided for us and led us this far… Pray too that we won’t stress about it.
We’re with my family at the moment and will soon head to Germany to see Ines’ family: packing up a home is hard, saying goodbye to friends and family is more tasking and wearing; please do pray for us and the kids that as we prepare to leave in just 6 weeks time we will know God’s help, presence and peace as well as opportunities to proclaim his truth in our words and in how we live.