Tonight the sun set on our fourth day in the new neighborhood. A couple of weeks ago I asked many of you to pray for the relationships that we hoped to begin here, with an eye towards being kind, experiencing kindness, and seeing the Spirit of God bring many to life in Jesus.
The families on our street are wonderful people. We have experienced a kind reception and a few conversations that have gone beneath surface chat about the weather and talk about careers. The cultural diversity on our street is refreshing, with each family giving evidence of a wide range of life stories. I'm using pseudonyms since I haven't asked their permission, but I want to give you a brief sketch.
Juan and Maria are both school teachers in the special education departments of their school. They come from a Roman Catholic background and represent a God-given love for all kinds of people, especially the least of those in society. We can't wait to get to know them on a deeper level.
Yesterday Kevin and Brandi welcomed their second child into the world. His delight was evident when he came over to my garage to share the news. Kevin works in real estate investment and takes great care of the trees in his front yard. Our daughter is looking forward to spending more time with their little girl, and of course the baby too!
Jeremiah and Leah are both serving in the Air Force. Their schedules are pretty hairy, but they still manage to keep up with most folks on the street, and they love their neighbors (hopefully they'll love having us as neighbors too). We got to know them more on Tuesday after Leah accidentally backed out of the garage before the door was fully open. With Jeremiah gone, I and another neighbor shared the task of getting the garage door back on its tracks.
Our oldest has met a couple of boys his age and is just starting to spend time with them. We hope to meet their families soon.
A little beyond our immediate neighborhood we've met a waitress who is hoping for a better job to come along that will be a greater source of means for her and her precious daughter. She longs to see her daughter's father get a job and to make a commitment in marriage. We've met a sales agent who is new at her job and hoping to find success. We've met a school teacher who is new to Vegas and trying to find his way. We don't yet have a clear picture of where some of these folks are in relation to the gospel, but we look forward to learning more about their lives and discussing the gospel soon as our Lord opens doors.
We know that we carry a treasure in clay vessels. Pray that new friends will see the gospel at work in our lives, through all of our own brokenness, and will be drawn by God's Spirit to find wholeness in Jesus. Pray that the message of redemption will be clearly articulated in our words and through our actions.