The unexpected journey struck again. The following two-years saw baby step improvements in our situation. One of the most notable came out of one of the most—at least to our way of thinking—tragic events. Our denomination sold the building our group was meeting in, giving us 30-days to vacate the parsonage. The unexpected journey! We found a place to rent in a nice secluded neighborhood. One day while I was doing some yard work, a neighbor approached me asking me if he could show me something. He took me to his custom made home across the street giving me a room by room detailed tour. To my surprise it looked like the dream home my wife and I had drawn out back in 2000. In January 2010 we moved into that house with a lease-purchase agreement. I closed my fledgling business, went to work for a funeral home selling insurance plans and continued to enjoy the journey of house church. The next two-years seemed like the favor of the Father smiling upon us. There were challenges to be sure, but they seemed smaller while the blessings seemed larger. Then it happened. “Go to North Carolina” came the call. We promptly said no. “Go to North Carolina,” came the call again. We said no. The call continued until we went through the process mentioned earlier finally determining that it was the voice of the Father. So, instead of exercising the option and buying the house, we exercised the option and moved to North Carolina. That was unexpected! The next two years were—well it would be better stated that they ARE still unfolding. At the moment we are back at my mother-in-laws endeavoring to hear the voice of the Father for the next phase of this unexpected journey. I write all of this for three reasons.

1—despite what anyone would say, we truly believe we are following the direction of our gracious loving heavenly father. Don’t ask me to explain that, I can’t. But I can explain that had we not been on the journey in those earlier days, we could have missed something very important of the Father’s plan for us—operating within the house church setting. For some reason this is a necessary part of our journey. In fact something is even now in the works regarding this. More will follow at the right time.

2—this blog began with the journey that my—then-12-year old and I took to discover manhood. The journey itself was challenging enough, but when you factor in the events that I have briefly unfolded, I trust you see the bigger challenge of the journey.

3—the journey is far from over. This isn’t some “please pity me” story meant to tug at your heartstring in order to get something from you. Quite the opposite. It is an excitingly scary journey that is meant to challenge you, encourage you, perhaps even motivate you to step out in your own journey with Abba God.

The journey is about a deep abiding personal relationship with the godhead. It is one that builds over time. It is one that is filled with challenges, hardships, setbacks as well as joy beyond logic. It is a journey that is only getting started. One that will not end when our days on this earth are over. In a way you could say it is a different way of viewing Mary’s Hope—the face-to-face reunion with my very close and personal best friend, papa!