A Temporary Home

(Our Christmas letter generated enough comments that I decided to publish to a wider audience.)

Dear friends and family,

As most of you know, 2014 was a year of transition for our family. We sold our Mableton home and moved into a newly constructed home in Kennesaw, Georgia. We are so thankful to God for this new house. It has so many great features for Gwendolyn, like a roll-in shower and lots of hardwood floors for her to walk around on in her gait trainer. There is plenty of room for the boys, inside and outside. The location also puts us much closer to our fantastic church (Burnt Hickory Baptist) and great schools for all of our children.

But it was the in-between time, the time we were in a rental house, that I want to share about with you. We jokingly called it our “Acworth Exile.” The rental house was very small, had stairs to Gwendolyn’s bedroom, and was not ready for us when we arrived (no bathrooms were completely finished/working). We had to deal with lots of dust and bugs. And half the garage was full of the landlord’s stuff. It was temporary and a work in progress.

There were some good things, though. All the appliances were new. The location was close to Aidan’s school. We had access to a pool and basketball court. The lease was month-to-month. And, we knew it was temporary. Our new house was being built. We could go see the progress (though sometimes it seemed slow) and imagine what it would be like to move in. So, we crossed off the days on a Steelers calendar and made it work. It was just temporary.

Jesus, who is God Himself, left His forever home to temporarily make his home among us. He gave up His divine rights and power to become an infant, a child, then a man of no privilege. He became a servant to those whom He created and who could not fathom His purpose. We were not prepared for Him. He had to deal with dust and bugs. He left the grandeur and perfection of heaven to sweat, and cry, and hurt, and hunger, and ultimately to be rejected and killed. But He decided we were worth the temporary move. As it says in Hebrews 2:9, “But we see him who for a little while was made lower than the angels, namely Jesus, crowned with glory and honor because of the suffering of death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone.

1298 Hamilton Creek Drive is not our permanent home, either. As believers in Jesus, we trust Him when He said, “In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also.” (John 14:2-3). Jesus is preparing a new heaven and a new earth as our forever home! So, while there is pain and heartache here — while there are temporary laughs and glimpses of eternity – while we gratefully accept our tasks and responsibilities for now – our real home is yet to come. We can’t always see the progress, and we don’t know how many days to mark on the calendar, but God is a builder we can trust. We can imagine (a little) what it will be like to move in. Throughout time, God’s people “desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared for them a city.” (Hebrews 11:16)

Our prayer for your family is that Christmas will remind you of Jesus’ temporary home with us and then you will turn your faith toward that city which God is building for those who trust in Him.

May God bless your temporary home and prepare you for the eternal one!

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10 thoughts on “A Temporary Home

  1. Brenda Nave says:

    thank you for sharing your situation and making us aware of our temporary home. You always say things so well and give us plenty to think about. You and your family will always be special to us. We am so happy for your new temporary home.

  2. Sean Durity says:

    Thank you so much, Brenda. Melanie and I have always admired you and Rod. You have loved each other well, grown a wonderful family, served faithfully and lovingly for decades, and touched so many lives — like ours. You are our model couple.

  3. I know you. I am anonymous on my blog, but we go to the same church. Call me a chicken I suppose. I have spoken to your wife several times. The next Prayer in Every City will be in March so look for my posters.

  4. Hi, Sean. I’m longing for home (my permanent, heavenly home) tonight. It’s so wonderful to have a hope beyond this poor, broken world! Thank you, Jesus! I loved your analogy, Sean. I needed to be reminded of that tonight.

    • Sean Durity says:

      I am so glad that my post could be of some encouragement. Yes, sometimes that longing for HOME is so strong. May God comfort you here and now with the promises of there and soon.

  5. As I sit writing in our rental, this is a beautiful analogy. I can sometimes focus on the wrong things. Thank you.

    • Sean Durity says:

      You know, sometimes I think the Christian life is really an exercise in focus. Learning to focus on Christ and his ways and plans instead of mine. But I am so easily distracted…

  6. Melinda Sanford says:

    You and Melanie inspire me each time I get to speak with y’all. I am so very glad I found this. Thank Rebecca Persails next time you see her! The perspective is right on. Thank you so much for the reminder.

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