One thing we did this summer was meet a lot of new people on mission teams who came to help out Connect Church in a variety of ways, and who brought much needed encouragement too! While visiting with one such team, one man asked me if there was anything I didn't like about living here. If he had asked me a couple of years ago, after we had only lived here a few short months, I could have given him a long list of things. But, he had me stumped for a minute. I stammered to find anything substantial to say. I could think of minor things, like having to drive 2 hours to get to a Chick-fil-a (which we've only done once) and no good Tex Mex (although we really didn't have that in TN either)... The only thing that was worth saying was the great distance we are away from our family and closest friends. I definitely don't like that part. Yet, even that group of people is scattered all over the globe, so there's no one place to go that would satisfy the desire to be closer to all of them - yet! :)
So in that moment I began to realize something quite profound - just how much I love living here. I know... that's deep! But I had such a hard time adjusting to our move here that it was a great moment for me! I love living so near the mountains that I can see them in every direction on clear days and it not take long to drive to countless great hiking spots, or snow-sledding spots. I love living near the Puget Sound and many lakes, where we can go canoeing, kayaking, sailing and where we can see beautiful sunsets on the water. I love downtown Seattle - the market, the arts, the restaurants... I love having so many places on our to-explore list that we'll probably have to live here a lifetime to do them all. I love all the amazing camping spots. I love what God has called us to do here - to plant a church in a place of great spiritual need that will plant other churches, all for the purpose of bringing people to Him, the All-Satisfying Savior. I love the people He's brought to our church. I love our community and the fact that I can walk down the street or across the street to go to dinner, a play date, a ladies' night out, a birthday party... and the fact that being outside on a nice day means many kids to play with and conversations with friends.
I'm sure I could come up with a few more things I love about this place, but you get the idea. :) In so many ways I feel like I was made to live here, and that's a gift from God that I'm so grateful for!