Driving to the airport after leaving our quaint little lake house in the Cape was THE LAST thing I wanted to be doing. Every mile that registered on the rented Chrysler odometer was a reminder of the life we were leaving behind. Vacation. Relaxation. Water. Happy kids.
Absolutely nothing in me wanted to return to our little city of Hamtramck, MI and the life we live there.
The two cities couldn’t be any more different.
Cape Cod: ponds, lakes, beaches, antique shops, kayaks, white wine, hammocks, late nights, early mornings, coffee.
Hamtramck: puddles, empty lots, cracked sidewalks, dollar stores, icecream trucks, graffiti, abandoned homes… at least the late nights, early mornings, and coffee still exist here, too.
Being away for one week from this crowded city had been good for my soul, but it also aided in helping me forget why we came in the first place.
Thankfully, it didn’t take long to remember.
After hearing a possible gunshot (which turned out to be illegal fireworks) while unpacking our car, I noticed the house across the street was buzzing. This house has had it’s share of sketchy residents. In fact, it housed the alleged porch fire starters just one year ago. I was happy to see it sell and even happier to see the new owners doing work on it.
But it wasn’t until today that I mustered up enough courage to go meet them. And as she invited me in to show off all the incredible work they’ve done, I was reminded of the hope there is for this city. As I listened to her dreams about having a block party I was reminded again that God is able. That Detroit is NOT dead. That people care. That dead things can be brought back to life.
So, I’m heading to bed tonight full. Full of love for my neighbors, hope for the city, and prayers for Jesus to be King.
All images taken from a very interesting street in Detroit. It’s a funky outdoor art experience located in the heart of the city. Once you come here, you can’t forget it. A whole bunch of junk thrown together to make beautiful art. Some call it crazy. I call it cool. And it draws people into the city. Into a place their Prada handbag would never otherwise see. Interested to know more? Watch this video about how the project got started or visit the website.
The children of Detroit “walk to school past burned-out houses, rubble, debris, crime and decay. Our purpose is to offer them another view, another perspective – to positively change the environment the children see every day. In the process, we help build self-esteem, encourage cooperation and foster a sense of pride in their community.” I am PROUD of my city.