From a Host Family's Perspective

This entry was originally written for Trinity's website and weekly publication of Trinity Life. My name is Brian Uthlaut, and I'm writing to encourage you to do something maybe a little bit crazy, maybe a little bit overwhelming, maybe moderately uncomfortable. Would you consider hosting a Trinity Fellow this year?

With three children ranging almost three to almost nine, our family's days are spent similarly to many of yours—running to and from work and around town; getting children fed, clothed, taught, practiced, to bed...hopefully without injury, meltdown or forgetting something major along the way. Trying to figure out how to connect more with friends and family. It doesn't ever feel like we are "caught up" on much of anything, let alone everything.

Two summers ago, my wife Heather and I responded to Dennis Doran's requests for host families for the Trinity Fellows Program, as we felt a calling to open up our home to give what we could—a roof overhead, some good food, time with our affectionate and energetic kids, and a real look at the joys and challenges of life down the road—to these young people and to our church family.

Two years later, we have been blessed in ways that exceed our giving in the relationships that we have built with the two fellows who have been, and will always be, part of "our family." Hosting fellows has brought community to our home, when we might not have pursued it as actively, and has stretched us outside of our comfort zone in a good way.  As we take part in the lives of people wrestling with how to enfold what might be seen as fragments of faith, occupation, calling, love, family, community all into life, we're reminded to continue to wrestle actively with that as well, when life can so easily lapse into those separate fragments as we live by the clock and the calendar.

On top of these blessings, our children have had the sweet and joyous gift of a really big brother, who cares about them and invests in their lives. They learn about intergenerational life and the appreciation of others' needs with Fellows living with us and joining our family. Just as in so many aspects of our life in the Lord, we can easily think that we don't have enough of what it takes to serve Him and the community around us—not enough space, not enough time, not enough energy. It doesn't take as much as you think, though, to make a difference in a Fellow's life and for your family's life to be blessed in kind.

Please email us (Brian Uthlaut or Heather Uthlaut) if you'd like to talk more about life with a Fellow.

Brian and Heather Uthlaut