We are almost done with our first month in Berlin. It has been a great time and really hard all at the same time. We hope in this blog post is to give you a recap of what has happened this month and then we would like to follow up with a few future blog posts showing what the Lord has taught us in this time. We hope that it is an encouragement to you.
First we learned that finding an apartment is not as easy as you may think. Ability to pay and desire to rent have very little to do with actually finding a place. You can be turned down because you have kids or because you have no kids. You can be turned down because you have a pet or because you have no pet. You can be turned down for any and every reason and it really depends on the owner of the building and/or landlord to determine what sort of community he/she wants to create in the property.
But we have landed on the place that we originally thought would be ours! It turns out seeing the place in person was much better than pictures showed. That made it much harder when it was all in jeopardy for a while.
We have gotten bank accounts set up and temporary cell phones. We will likely change phone numbers soon because having a contract in place can be a lot more cost effective. You trade flexibility for spendable cash.
We have all gotten bicycles, which is a marvelous way to get around the city. Ben still needs to learn to ride his but we met a family selling an almost new second hand bike and we jumped on the deal. The challenge is that there are virtually no training wheels in this land so Ben is still limited because of his lack of wanting to learn to ride. We expect that will come soon and we can be even more mobile.
We move into our new place on August 1 and then what presented itself was the challenge of turning on utilities. So I was planning on taking a lot of time to go and physically show up to these places hoping someone could help me with the language. Then I would need to shop for the best prices and make the decisions. BUT the family moving out of the apartment we are moving into was so kind as to spend several hours with us on the internet helping us get everything set up. It may seem like such a trivial thing but that literally saved us about a weeks worth of non stop work! We am so grateful to them.
So then it remains that we needed furnishings. The Lord orchestrated our steps to various people moving and needing to liquidate items. This has saved us so much money and we are so thankful! Tomorrow we will have it all picked up and delivered to the new place.
We also have been set up to begin language classes in August. This arrangement is such a blessing and I am still in awe of how it works but let's just say that this is a major blessing.
While this blog post can come across as though we have been sitting by watching the Lord take care of everything, that was not the case. What really happened was that the Lord orchestrated everything and we fretted and stressed and prayed. You would think that eventually we would default to trusting Him. We are still growing in that area.
You are all wonderful and we are so thankful for you all!