Have you ever encountered something that just seemed big?
No, like, really big.
Bigger than any one person.
Bigger than lots of people.
I’m talking GOD kind of big.
Words fail me now. And I’m not sure that even if I had the right ones, they could begin to encompass the way that I see some incredible things beginning to happen.
Do me a favor before you read any further? Watch the video below.
Apparently, for now, that video has gone. not sure what happened, but for now, check it out on their facebook page.
Now, meet Clay and Lindsey.
Aren’t they adorable? Isn’t she gorgeous? I kind of want to pinch their cheeks and adopt them. (I totally stole this photo of her facebook page and I hope she won’t hate me forever.) If you watched the video above, then you saw the blue house, which was kind of like the second volume edition installment of The Brown House. And in the Blue house, there were college guys living there. One of those college guys (the one in the red shirt at the bottom of the frame, was Clay.)
This is the Yellow House.
But let me rewind.
In the video above, Clay and Lindsey were already involved in this project. They began by helping with the smaller things: offering tutoring twice a week for the kids, at the blue house, and lots of children of all ages came over. They would tutor, color, and play with them. Clay also volunteered as the middle school basketball coach at a local school. One of the boys on the team, they called “Baby D.”
One day, in a seemingly small moment, Lindsey and Baby D were standing outside. Baby D suddenly said, “Miss Lindsey. You see that yellow house over there? I think you and Clay should stay there, Because I really like you and Coach Clay. And I don’t really want Y’all to leave.”
In the words of Lindsey, “It was something that really made me stop and think. Not to mention, cry.”
It’s funny how God speaks to us in those small moments.
She remembered looking at the house, thinking that it was a cute house, but that it wasn’t even up for sale. Clay and Lindsey were certainly in no place financially to buy it, and they weren’t even married yet.
Fast forward to 8 months later.
Of all things, the Yellow house went on the market.
Lindsey remembers Clay casually mentioning it one night. She responded with a “that’s cool.”
“I knew what he was getting at, but honestly I didn’t want to even start talking about it, because it was nice to me that we were involved there, but we didn’t have to live there. But something about it made me wrestle with the idea, and what Baby D told me so many months ago came back to haunt me. So I agreed to at least go look at the house.
What harm can that do, right?
Everyone is on a different path in this world. But we are all called to honor God with our talents. With our belongings. With our homes. And what an amazing calling this one is. I realize not everyone can move into the poorer areas of a city of town. Not everyone can completely change their lifestyles, because many people are serving in so many different ways. But it certainly makes me personally stop and think, and question myself. Of the ways we, as a family, are using our own space to help others. In ways that I am personally letting God use my talents. In the ways that I am personally letting God use my home.
I feel like I’ve been grappling with this concept for some time now. In a way that reels me in at the core, chews me up, and spits me back out after I’ve struggled with it time and again.
Clay and Lindsey are doing something that is the opposite of what our society teaches us. No one is “supposed” to give up their middle class lifestyle and move into a poverty stricken neighborhood. Aren’t we all supposed to climb the ladder? And after we reach the top of one, move on to another?
I’m honored, and completely humbled that Clay and Lindsey have asked me to be a part of this process with them. They’re taking a hollowed out, abandoned shell of an old house, and making it new again. To allow it to serve its purpose in a community that desperately needs it. That desperately needs Him.
I’m excited to say that Clay and Lindsey have graciously allowed me to (ever so weakly) share this journey with all of you. I’m beyond thrilled that I get to help them go through, room by room, and help design their new home. And I’ll be sharing it with you, room by room, as we go through this process. My ultimate goal is to be able to show you the finished product a few years down the road, as this newlywed couple continues on an incredible journey together.
I’ll be back later this week to share their living room with you via an inspiration board, along with some ideas I’ve got up my sleeves in helping them make this place their new home. But most importantly, keep all of the families in this community in your prayers. I know they would appreciate that, more than anything.
Because it’s bigger than any one person.
It’s a God kind of big.