Well, it’s been a few days (and nights too!) and little by little we’re unpacking everything and getting settled in. The older two girls and I have been in a “throw away” mood so as we’re unpacking and putting away we’re also doing a lot of de-cluttering. I figure if we haven’t missed it in 3 months, it might not be too important! (Looking at it another way, we have to make space for all the stuff we brought back with us, especially books!) Our garbage will be extra full this week and we have already taken 2 bags of stuff to the charity shop with 3 more ready to go.
We felt very welcomed home when we arrived. Friends had put up “welcome home” balloons and banners for us, planted flowers, left dinner in a crock-pot and made up the beds for us. Several friends have stopped by with cards and treats. It is so great to be back. Of course we were sad to leave Oregon, but it feels great to be back and it is nice to know we were missed.
We’ve all been enjoying the slower pace of life – a chance for the kids to stay at home (instead of back-to-back social engagements) and just dress up or play play-dough. There’s been more time to read together too. I took stock today of what homeschooling we need to finish for this school year and there’s not too much. So we’ll start tackling that next week.
While I’ve been organizing, Peter has been preparing his sermon for tomorrow. He’ll be preaching at our home church here on the second half of I Peter 3. This will be the first of a 3 week series that he is preaching. Pray for a clear mind for him and powerful impact in people’s hearts.
A current challenge for prayer – Joel and Mariah are sleeping terribly since we have arrived home. Of course they are jet-lagged so hopefully it’s going to change soon. But they keep taking turns crying (Mariah coming out to us) which wakes the other one up and stresses them out. I think they’re both struggling to adjust to their new/old beds. Peter and I did not get much sleep last night. By the time they finally went to sleep, we were both so wide awake (jet-lag!) that we just stayed up for awhile and didn’t get to sleep til 3 or 4 am. I know this too shall pass – but we’d appreciate prayer for wisdom that we’d handle it wisely and with good attitudes. Mariah was struggling with sleep and getting out of her bed before we left and then did fine on the trip so we’re not sure if this is the same old thing or just jet-lag.
And finally, I will end this long post with a request for prayer that Peter and I would both be able to re-establish good routines, especially time with God. Without drinking from the well of His Word and communing in prayer, we will dry up and have nothing to pour into the lives of others. Honestly, it’s been tough to get time with God during our time in the U.S. Most people don’t realize that when missionaries come home for a “break” it’s not so much of a break. We’ve had a really wonderful time, but it was very busy and hard to keep to a routine (not an excuse but a reality nonetheless). So pray that we would make Christ number one in our lives and spend regular time with Him.