Originally published on tvprays.org.
“The home is the center of life. It is a refuge from the grind of work, the pressure of school, and the menace of the streets. We say that at home, we can ‘be ourselves.’ Everywhere else, we are someone else. At home, we remove our masks.” Matthew Desmond, Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City
Desmond’s book came out in 2016, about a year after Trinity New Hope, Inc. (TNH) was started, long before masks took on new importance. TNH is an Affordable Housing neighborhood of 16 3-bedroom single family homes in West Nampa. We celebrated our five-year anniversary in April 2020, right as we were all hunkering down.
For all of the hardships and struggles we have dealt with as the TNH team (board and staff), stuff I should not publish for probably another ten years, I would not trade this work for anything. It has brought us close to those who are experiencing homelessness. It has taught me that as many stories as filled up Trinity’s sanctuary pre-pandemic, that is how many stories fill up the homes. There are of course threads and we all have learned how complex affordable housing is and how difficult it is to make systemic changes. But each family or individual also brings their own unique background, trials, and hope. And when I wonder, “where is God in all this?” the Holy Spirit often responds, “right here—where sinfulness and brokenness are most apparent,” whether they belong to me, another individual, the community, or the world.