Today the Holmes children are signing the final papers transferring our family house to a sweet young couple with two little boys. It is the house that our parents built in 1957 when I was eight years old, Michael four years old, and Christie an infant. Our parents lived together @ 407 Cherokee Drive for more than fifty years, and our dad more than 10 additional years after mother's death. Even though we all went to college, eventually married and moved away, it has been home to us most of our lives. This past weekend we spent some time together in this house, rehearsed the precious memories that have lingered, and thanked God that our parents, Esther and Chester Holmes transformed this house into a real home for our entire family.
Esther and Chester were Christians and faith was an essential component of our lives together. This home was constructed on a firm biblical foundation and was old school Baptist to the core. Church was a strong influence in our lives. You know, church at least three times every week and all of the special occasions in the Christian year. Looking back now there's no doubt that faith was a strong factor in their turning the house at 407 Cherokee Drive into a real home. Scripture brings great clarity to this life process---
For now I have chosen and consecrated this house that my name may be there forever.
My eyes and my heart will be there for all time.
2 Chronicles 7: 16, ESV
By wisdom a house is built, and by understanding it is established; by knowledge the
rooms are filled with all precious and pleasant riches.
Proverbs 24: 3-4, ESV
Two special elements of this house give the three of us a sense of certainty about the house we are entrusting to another family. One, our dad planted a dogwood tree to commemorate the birth of every grandchild. Five dogwood trees announced Liz, Brian, Matt, Mollie, and Josh. In an odd twist the tree marked for our son Brian actually died months after his physical death in 2011. Today, the remaining four are thriving and will hopefully bring joy to the new family when they make this house their residence. Two, the young couple who purchased the house wrote us a letter after viewing it and making the decision to purchase it. They sensed the "...precious and pleasant riches" that has been part of our home life. We are thankful to entrust our home to their stewardship.
So, it's another chapter of life. A house is sold and the joys of home are now multiplied in our family units. These new owners will have to turn that house into a home, and the rest of us will replicate the home life we experienced there with the promise that ours will be a beloved and remembered home as well. Our challenge is to move forward into these next chapters equipped with the memories and lessons learned in that blessed home our parents so gladly created for us.