Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Home Sweet Hotel Suite

My husband and I have been living in an extended stay unit at The Inn at Leola Village, since our home was deluged three months ago. This charming conglomeration of refurbished cottages and new buildings isn't home, but it is a palace compared to refugee and natural disaster tents.  In a global context, we are blessed.

Even by American standards, the Inn at Leola is a charming, quiet place to stay; it deserves its four stars.  From the front desk receptionist, to the breakfast servers, to the cleaning staff, every employee is professional, courteous, and efficient. The rooms are well-appointed and the grounds lovely.

But beyond the nice surroundings, we are blessed by the very reason we are here--a damaged home.  Let me explain.  This week an article in The Wall Street Journal by Andrea Petersen ("When Home is Where the Hotel Is") listed causes for the increase in long-term stay units. The article made us count our blessings.
 Allison V. Smith for The Wall Street Journal
As Petersen noted, the slow real-estate market has contributed to families opting for temporary housing.  We can be thankful we are not waiting for a home to sell in a depressed market.  Nor are we in an extended stay unit because our marriage is dissolving.  Thankfully, we are not here because a family member is seeking medical treatment, nor are we jobless.  Furthermore, we are blessed even in a local context.  Some Lancastrians are homeless, but uninsured. At least, our damage was caused by a contractor with liability insurance.  Indeed, we have many reasons to be thankful.

However, lest I sound too much like Pollyanna, true confession: I get very perturbed by the insurance company's lethargy.

Donegal Building 

When I get frustrated, I try to list the positives of our situation:

First, this unexpected dislodgment has provided a respite from daily chores--cleaning and cooking.


Second, staying in a two-room efficiency demonstrates how little we actually need. Living with less is freeing.
Third, when what you have is taken away, you are more appreciative of what you have.

Fourth, freedom from the mundane makes one focus on people--not on things.

And fifth, our homelessness has made me appreciate what Jesus gave up for us.  He did not have a place to lay his head during his stay on earth.  Why would he leave the splendor of heaven to be born in a stable, live as an itinerant, even be buried in a borrowed tomb?  To prove his love for us, which is the biggest cause for a thankful heart this Christmas season.

Won't you join me in thanking the Lord for his gift, no matter your circumstances.


  1. Oh Maury, yes I join you in thanking Jesus for His gift! Your post brought tears to my eyes!
    Yet the tears were mixed with smiles at your little humorous touches as well as your great attitude which reflects your beautiful heart.
    Although it's nice to have a break from your chores ;) I know you will be so happy to be back in your home! I pray that will be soon!

  2. I just stumbled onto your blog and have read, cried for, and rejoiced in your different stages of life since your flood. Thank you for putting things in perspective--something we all fail to do from time to time.