Memorial Day 2009 was not incredibly restful for us but it was a day full of fun and Jesus! We were able to throw in a little relaxation while camping on the Tolt River Sunday night but Monday evening myself, Kelli and Becca H. headed to Tacoma to spend some time prayerfully exploring the place we will call home in the next 6-7 months. The trip down to Tacoma made me appreciate the sacrifices Kelli makes for us and for the our calling more than ever. As we were driving around places that have become so familiar to me, I realized how little time Kelli has been able to spend in Tacoma compared to me. Because she spends her days pouring into the people she works with at Si View and helping to support our family with her full-time income, she often has to miss day trips I am able to make to our new city. It was so wonderful to see her enthusiasm and watch the Lord grow her passion even more!
So you can know how to pray I want to tell you about the 3 areas we are exploring and praying over as we try to determine where we will actually settle in Tacoma. The first area is in the heart of downtown on Pacific Ave. It is the place where we first caught a glimpse of all God wants to do through us in this city. Pacific Ave runs right through the downtown area of new Tacoma and is home to countless people, businesses and the University of WA Tacoma. It is the embodiment of all that draws us to Tacoma. It is young, fast-paced, diverse and full of possibilities.
The second area is the 6th Avenue area. It is a trendy, older area that has a pretty diverse feel. There is a beautiful university campus (University of Puget Sound) a couple blocks away and 6th Avenue itself has everything from fast food restaurants, a dueling piano bar, coffee shops, and even a large Baptist church with a "For Sale" sign in front of it.
The final area is a little out of our comfort zone but God seems to be opening some doors there. It is on the outskirts of urban Tacoma for sure but is the home to Tacoma Community College. It has a much more middle class feel and is surrounded by neighborhoods, malls, schools, etc. The newest member of our team, Becca E., is considering enrolling at TCC and we are also having some incredible opportunities to do ministry on that campus.
The doors our many and discernment is key. I'm thankful to know that the Holy Spirit is guiding our steps and will lead us to the right area where we can plant our lives, plant the gospel, and watch our Jesus work! Thank you for praying!