Our last visit to Phoenix in February of 2012 was one of the most profound moments of our journey. It was the place where we actually saw the hand of God knit together the body. We saw the miracle of community woven together like we had never seen before. It was also our first real taste of an economy not of this world. We were looking forward to going back but it is the desert. I know folks rave about this place but for a water girl, the desert is the desert! We were tired and the pieces of the puzzle that we had last time around were not falling into place. We didn’t have a clear picture of who, how, what or why for this visit. However, we moved forward in faith.
The Skeens were our hosts. Jeff, Amy and their four precious children.
Who knew our weary souls would find such refreshment in this dry desert? And, yet we did. Ten days we spent, pouring into community, soaking up the sun… and the rain. Yes, it rained for three days in the desert. There was a harmony that washed over us the moment we pulled into their driveway and we knew we were with family. We shared story, encouragement, laughter, difficulties, meals, and more encouragement.
Because our schedule was light, with only one performance in the area (at the Chandler Multicultural Festival) we had more time to spend really tending to some much-needed areas, including our health. Amy took Grace and I to Holy Yoga. We ended up getting in three session, just the kick-start we needed. I was able to find a chiropractor and a massage therapist to do some intense work on my traps and neck, relieving a head ache I had since October. Banjo was able to really connect with Noah, the Skeens oldest and enjoy the friendship of a brother. Craig and Jeff connected deeply as well and at one point I made a joke about them having a “bromance” but honestly, it really was great to see them as kindred spirits, working out story and building more on the bus. Graciana was poured into by Anna, a Young Life leader from Jeff and Amy’s church. A real joy and contentment fell over Graciana and a vision of her future was seen. We shared in song with friends from Kineo Church. We enjoyed continued community with our friends, the Seymore’s, The Hummels, The Ortiz’s, Joel Pritchard, Lori Englert and Steve from Hope thru Art.
The desert is still the desert, but the community we shared in Phoenix will remain an oasis. And, we can’t wait to be with these kinfolk again.