The tagline on my email signature reads, “Embrace Change-it expands your purpose, which broadens your perspective, and illuminates your path.” These words are much more than a creative tagline for my email, they’re my life!
After 20 + years of climbing proverbial ladders and transferring up and down the east coast, my husband and I decided to embrace yet one more change, a move back home. After all, we didn’t want any of our children growing up and deciding to stay in one of those far away states we had only temporarily populated.
First, we had a house to sell so we made all of the necessary repairs and improvements, those things we never got around to finishing and enjoying for ourselves. Seriously!
Next, we removed anything and everything that was reminiscent of the family who actually lived there (MINE) in order to stage an illusion,
“Welcome Home Family, this is your Perfect House” (NOT MINE).
Finally, when the house was staged and ready to go on the market we realized we really needed to take our family out of the mix. That perfect house was no longer a welcoming place for us to live so we packed up and traveled south where we indeed were welcomed home with open arms.
The plan was to stay with my parents for the summer while searching for a new house and waiting for the other to sell, but when the “Welcome Home … Perfect House” didn’t sell by end of summer, moving back home took on an entire new meaning.
We were feeling the impact of:
None of us had expected our visit to linger so long, eleven months to be exact. When my parents had graciously said, “welcome home,” they didn’t limit us, they waited out the season with us and it all worked out.
And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. Romans 8:28 (KJV)
During this time my mom and I had the privilege of ministering together,
My Pop recognized that my boys were missing their daddy and he began to fill their days with childhood stories as they studied history; homework help as they studied math and lunches when I needed a break.
My Dad took us to many breakfasts and we got to know him better than ever before.
A special bond formed between my grandmother and me,
and then between my grandmother and my younger boys.
My oldest son dated the girl of his dreams, now his wife,
and my daughter finished her degree.
And the list goes on and on… all treasured experiences and relationships distance had never before allowed.
We left the northeast in order to create an illusion, “Welcome Home … this is your Perfect House” for potential buyers. Ironically, the longer the inauthentic illusion remained on the market, the more we experienced an authentic “welcome home,” hospitality of another kind. It was an experience that trained our hearts and expanded our perspective.
Fast forward six years. The older two children are now grown and flown. But they too wanted to return home, and they came, and they lingered while looking for a new house.
Guess who got to expand her purpose when she uttered those familiar words, “welcome home?”
Guess who got to wait out a season of life together because her perspective had been broadened?
My previous experience illuminated my future path.
There’s another place where we’ll hear “welcome home” one day, but it’s not a temporary place or even a season of life to wait out together, it’s eternity.
And God… well, He’s still working all of our things together for good until that day when we’ll hear, “Welcome Home” one last time.
For now, “Embrace Change-it expands your purpose, which broadens your perspective, and illuminates your path.” Lora Leftwich