I (Lindsay) can’t believe it’s been months since we shared anything with you! Since buying our house we’ve had a lot of activity, even with the slower pace of summer. We’ve been enjoying all of the sunshine and the warmer weather, especially since we’ve been doing so much yard work lately!
Here’s a brief summary of our summer so far:
We spent a week at InterVarsity’s camp on the other side of the UP in early May. I volunteered in the kitchen while Hans spent time with the leaders from MTU. It was a great time of fellowship with the chapter and of vulnerability and openness. Caleb spent the week with Hans’ parents and had a blast with them, too!
Orientation for New Staff
Every new staff with InterVarsity is expected to attend an orientation conference in Madison, WI. We couldn’t make it last year, so we attended this year as a family. It was an incredible time of Bible study and other talks and discussions that helped us to view our role on campus in a new light.
If you’ve seen us in the past few days, you’ve probably heard our news (we aren’t exactly keeping quiet about it!). We are buying a house! It has (almost) all of the things we were hoping for in a house, and some of the things we weren’t expecting, so we’re pretty excited.
It’s close to Michigan Tech (closer than either of us lived as students when we were off campus) and is on a street that is mostly long term residents, so our neighbors won’t be changing seasonally. From what we know of the neighborhood, we think we’re going to like living there a lot!
The cool thing about the whole process is that we’ve been able to see God’s hand in all of it. We hadn’t noticed the house earlier (and it’s been on the market 1 1/2 years) because it is a two bedroom, and we wanted three. But when we decided to look at the listing just to see if it might work, we were surprised to see it was bigger than some of the three bedroom houses we had looked at and had a rather giant bedroom. We went to see it just over a week ago and fell in love in 20 minutes. It is close to campus, has a big living room/dining room space to host groups, has a nice yard, and has a garage – plus is a cool old house in good condition. All of these things were what we were looking for.
Later the same day, we found out there were two other potential buyers for the house, so we planned to visit again and make an offer later the following week. But on Monday we found out that there was another offer, so on Tuesday we visited the bank and the relator’s office and put in an offer, which was accepted on Wednesday afternoon. (Crazy, right?!?) God has blessed us through all of the process – having paperwork ready for the bank previously, visiting the house when we did… it all worked so intricately together and we are stunned by his provision and blessing in our lives.
It’s not officially ours yet, but we’re excited. I hope you like it as much as we do!
And no, we aren’t quite in love with the bedrooms, but they have potential… if we can get all of that wall paper down!
It seems that lately our weeks are full and our weekends are fuller. Between Hans’s work with students (which mainly fills afternoons and evenings) and family activities, we’ve been going strong. And when you add house hunting to the mix, it’s gotten a little crazy in the past few days.
We’ve been meeting with the students going to Bolivia every Saturday. I started making breakfast for the group and they decided the ten minute trip to Dollar Bay was worth it. (They were meeting on campus until three weeks ago.) Since next weekend is the beginning of spring break, we had them over for a movie night instead of a morning breakfast and watched También la Lluvia (Even the Rain), which is set in Cochabamba in 2000. It’s the story of two filmmakers who are producing a film about Christopher Columbus’s arrival in the Americas and the cruelty which then occurred to the indigenous people the Spaniards interacted with. At the same time they are making the film, the water wars are erupting – as the city cries out against the foreign owned, privatized, and expensive water company.
It’s the first time we’ve watched the movie since moving back to the States and it was fun to see streets we knew well. The group was interested in how the water wars were resolved and we spent awhile talking about Bolivia and the inequality that still exists there. We’re excited to see how God uses the group through their time in Bolivia – and how He teaches, challenges, and changes them.
In other news, we’ve been viewing houses sporadically and haven’t seen anything we liked until last Friday, when we found a house we really like. Later that day we found out that there are others interested in the house as well. With that phone call coming late Friday afternoon, today has been a day of phone calls and emails to get everything organized. We make an offer tomorrow morning!
Almost exactly three years ago, after staying with our families for a month before leaving for Bolivia and host families for two months once we arrived, we moved into our first home in Bolivia. Our first trip to the market – thanks to the help of a good friend – proved to be quite successful.
Now, it feels a little deja-vu-ish. After staying with friends and family for over seven weeks, we’ve finally arrived and started settling in to our new home. Our first trip to the grocery store to stock up – although we did it alone and it was less overwhelming than shopping in the market the first time – was also a success.
Obviously, a lot has changed in these three years, especially the little guy in the second picture. But as much as our lives have changed, God remains faithful, and we have seen – and experienced – his faithfulness more over these past few years than we have in our lives leading up to that point. Praise God for his faithfulness.