A lot of my post, shares, and updates are about our “doings” because, to be honest, the Lord has us busy doing a lot these days. Everything that we have prayed for the last few years, spoken about, shared with others, fundraised for, are coming to fruition and all at about the same time. But that is not what today is about. Today I want to share about our “being”.
Today is a Saturday. A gorgeous Saturday in our new apartment. We loved the place were lived for the last 5 years, it was such a God-send and we knew without a shadow of a doubt that was exactly where God wanted us, but last year God opened the door through a wonderful Christian family to provide a new place for us to live. We have worked very hard to remodel the new apartment over the last year and have finally moved from “this needs to be done” to “let’s sit on the balcony and enjoy”. The other apartment was in the center of town in the rush and busyness of town. A great place to walk anywhere you needed to go, but our new place is in the center of a Bulgarian neighborhood and it is a bit different.
Instead of the sounds of the street noises of cars, racing motorcycles, drunken pedestrians in the late night, football clubs celebrating their recent victories, and the ping ping ping of the walking signal feet from our bedroom window, now my sounds, sights, and smells are filled more with the family lives of everyday Bulgaria. The sounds of father and sons working on their cars, children laughing and riding bikes, women working on their terraces hanging clothes and fiddling with their balcony flowers.
The smells….oh the smells are what I am enjoying most of all. Instead of car fumes, I am enjoying the fragrance of the blooms of spring, the smell of grilled meat or vegetables, and freshly washed clothes on the line.
The views also can’t be beat. The apartment, which is in an old concrete block building set around Bulgarian family homes, has two terraces. One which looks to Osogovo mountain and one on the other side that looks to Konyavo mountain. We were also able to paint the walls with colors that made it feel a bit more like home, and it’s amazing how being engulfed with familiar colors has comforted our souls. God has blessed us with a place of peace to recharge our batteries and engage further into the lives of every day Bulgarians and we are so very grateful.
Don’t get me wrong, the place we enjoyed for 5 years before was perfect for what we needed at the time for location, for size, and to grow in deep relationship with our amazing landlord. We are just enjoying this new transition and thanking God for changes that are sometimes uncomfortable and a lot of work, but bless our hearts in the end.
The last 5 ½ years we have had temporary residency status and have had to apply each year for a new permission to stay. It required lots of time, documents, money, and trips to the local notary and police departments and usually lasted 3 months from start to finish. Last week we were able to apply for our long-term residency status that will last 5 years. With the new transition of home that feels more permanent and projects that are really setting down long term roots, it feels as if we are transitioning from a season of plowing and planting to a season of growth and to things that are blossoming, and we are excited about this new season of life. Thank you to all who join us on this ride.
Written by Dee Dee Galloway