We’re one week in to London and taking a moment to step back and reflect on what God has done so far. Perhaps the clearest reality we experienced in this last week is God's goodness. So much of this still feels surreal. God’s goodness to us over this last week only further emphasizes the wonder of it all. We know the road will get tough but we're grateful for a good start. Here’s a day-by-day recap of what happened over this last week…
We arrived in London on Saturday, 22 July. The kiddos both slept great on the flight and we had an easy time getting in. We traveled straight to our neighborhood to drop the bags in our new home - this was the first time Elizabeth, Perry, and Shepherd had visited the new place! Remarkably, our neighbors had the street closed down so they could have a block party to get to know one another and simply hangout for the day together - how exciting! We checked into our hotel, ate at the pizza place around the corner from our new home, and slept hard that night.
After sleeping for about 12 hours we made our way out to the neighborhood for the day. We figured out where a few stores are and bought cleaning supplies and went to work on the house. This was a good day of acclimating to the house and the neighborhood. We love the park (Queen's Park) that is at the end of our block - this is a crucial release valve for us so far!
We finished preparing the house for our possessions to arrive, took some good time to play in the park at the end of our street, and went shopping for the home. The kiddos continued to thrive and we grew a little more settled as we figured out how things worked.
Thomas got up early to meet the movers at the house and they moved our belongings in throughout the morning. Around lunch the Evans came by to say hello - they arrived just that morning! Together we went down to the park for a little play time and enjoyed catching up with each other - we can’t believe we’re all in London together! We spent the afternoon unpacking boxes and arranging things around the house. Thomas met with fellow Summit Network planter Billy Lowe that afternoon for a coffee and conversation - Billy planted in Alpharetta Georgia and was our first visitor to the neighborhood. This was our final night in the hotel.
We finished up our stay at the hotel and Ubered the last few bags over to Queen’s Park. We spent the day unpacking, settling, and met the Evans for dinner that night. Thomas ended up in London to spend some time at the Evangelical Ministers Assembly and made a few connections while there.
Thursday was more of the same with the exception of some great news: We received the news in the post that Perry had been accepted to Salusbury Primary! She will join the Year Ones class on an in-year transfer and start next week! Thomas also scurried off for a meeting with our friend Carl Porter who is a businessman and itinerant evangelist in London. The wear and tear of the last few days set in a little more as predictable tiredness set in.
We spent Friday around the house for the whole day and made more progress in settling things. We won't bore you with the play-by-play: we're unpacking life and trying to figure out where things are...it's gloriously mundane.
We spent Saturday with the Porters and had a really great time with them. The Porters have two daughters and they are a perfect match for Perry and Shepherd. These are the first friends the kiddos are making in London and we are grateful to God for connecting us with the Porters. Also, the heat wave slept through and left us grumpy in its wake. We had no idea how much we appreciated air conditioning! Life without AC is an adjustment so far. We bought fans for each of the bedrooms and are finding our way.
Pray With Us
Would you pray with us in the week ahead? There are a couple of specific things we need prayer for…
Perry starts school on Wednesday. She was accepted for in-year enrollment with the Year Ones at Salusbury Primary school. She will attend for the last few weeks of the year and have a secured position at the school when the Autumn term rolls around. Please pray for Perry (and mama) as she enters this brave new world on Wednesday. Pray also for our family as we settle our new home and prepare for our first team to arrive on Saturday (July 6). Thomas is preparing logistics for the team and it will be a busy week with Perry in school and everything still being new to us.
We will begin gathering for weekly bible study on Wednesday night (July 3) - we look forward to sharing more of what we’re studying with you. We’ve enjoyed seeing the Evans in the last week and are really excited to have them at their Airbnb in Queen’s Park for the next week - pray for their family of five as they hang in and prepare to move into their new home on July 11. Pray with us for the Browns as they come over to look at real estate next week and for Renee who is preparing to move to London in just about a month.
We love Queen’s Park. We’ve enjoyed getting to meet some of our neighbors already and a few people who work in the area. We want to find ways to serve the neighborhood and be involved in a meaningful way. Please pray that we would make good connections and find ways to serve and care for those around us. Please pray that God would soften hearts to hear the gospel and begin gathering people to form this new local church.
We go on your prayers. So much of the goodness in this last week was brought to us on the backs of your prayers. God gave us a really good first week here. We know times will get tough but He has blessed us with an easy entry. Thank you for partnering with us in prayer. We are so glad to be on this journey with you.