IKEA, Sleepys, Raymour, & Rest

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  • August 02, 2008

Can you believe we’ve been residents of Philadelphia for a week already? It has been a blur for us. I feel like all we’ve done for the last 7 days is unpack boxes and visit every furniture store in Philadelphia. No, seriously. I have seen every dining table that has ever been made. See, we never bought “real” furniture in Boston. Everything was second hand stuff that we were given or found cheap. But now, we knew that we were going to have to stop playing house, and buy grown up stuff – like chairs that you don’t have to wood-glue together every 3 days. But here’s the problem. Grown up furniture is expensive, and I am cheap. Do you know how much a bedroom set is! I’m still trying to convince Shainu that the air mattress we’re currently sleeping on is much nicer than a real bed.

To make matters worse, Shainu is too nice to just tell me what she wants. So we have the same conversation at every store.

Ajay: Do you see a table you like?

Shainu: Yeah, but I want you to like it too.  How about that one?

Ajay: Yes, I like it. I love it. Let’s buy it. Now, which table were you talking about?

Shainu: Come on buddy, that one. Seriously, do you like it?

Ajay: Shainu, I’m a guy. I don’t care how the table looks. As long as you fill it with food, I’m good.

But, I’m happy to say after a week of furniture shopping, we’ve ordered just about everything we need.  We were hoping to be settled in by the weekend, but it is going much slower than I thought. Perhaps it was a bit unrealistic to think you could get completely situated in a week.  So, hopefully in another week or so, the boxes will be cleared away and our home will be fully functional.   We’ll see.

In the middle of all this, it has been sweet to hang out with different folks from our team who have been praying about being a part of launching 7 Mile Road.  There are four couples in Philadelphia, and we’ve gotten to at least see everyone.  We’re hopeful to be able to hang out more in the coming weeks.

Tomorrow will be a much desired day of rest.  Shainu and I have been talking a lot about the Sabbath and how sweet it is that God designed a day of rest for His people.  The people of Israel were weekly called to trust the Lord and to rest.  I imagine there was a strong temptation to work.  How could you survive and feed your family, if every week you were setting aside a day to rest?  Yet the Lord’s people would have to trust that He would provide their daily bread, even if once a week, they weren’t out getting it.  In the New Covenant, we have been invited to enter God’s rest everyday through Christ.   But it is still sweet that we get to set apart a day as uniquely unto the Lord.

So tomorrow, we’re going to Liberti church in the morning and then ReaLife church in the evening.  We’ll sing, and pray, and hear God’s word, and enjoy the Lord and His people, resting in the finished work of Christ.  And all the boxes of our stuff that are unopened in the living room, will remain unopened.

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About Ajay Thomas

Ajay lives in Philadelphia with his wife Shainu and their kids Hannah and Micah. He is responsible for preaching and vision as a pastor at Seven Mile Road.


  • Avatar Binu Abraham says:

    Ajay, Shainu & Hannah,

    Welcome to Philly! Great to hear that you’re getting settled. We are so excited to have you guys here, and we’re looking forward to seeing God move in and through you.

    I know that things must be busy now, but Sherin and I would love to have you and your family over some time. Let us know when things slow down (if there is such a time :))


  • Avatar Ajay says:

    Thanks bro. And yes, we would love to come over! (We’d invite you guys, but we’re still using a cardboard box for a table.)

    Looking forward to seeing you soon.

  • Avatar Jo says:

    Welcome to Philly! This is supposedly the city of brotherly love! May the true love of Christ abide in you and may you experience that love in others too.

    I have looked at your website and I must say that I find it interesting. Are you an ordained minister?? Also, there are well over 20,000 Christian denominations today and an average of 5 new groups appearing weekly. What makes your church group the 7MR distinct? What is that claim that sets you apart from the 20,000 others and establishes you as True?

    I would appreciate your answers. Thanks so much!

  • Avatar Ajay says:

    Jo! Thanks for the welcome. And great questions. Here’s a brief shot at answering some of them.

    “Are you an ordained minister??”

    While finishing an M.Div at Gordon-Conwell, I was called to be a pastor at 7MR Boston and am currently in the process of becoming a licensed minister with the CCCC (an Evangelical denomination).

    “What is that claim that sets you apart from the 20,000 others and establishes you as True?”

    Jo, honestly, we’re not trying to be set apart from the Christian Church or establish ourselves as ‘The True’ church. Our hope is to fall right in line with 1000s of other churches throughout history and across the globe that have been centered around Jesus. He is the Truth and so our claim will be the same claim that every faithful church has proclaimed – that Jesus is Lord.

    We’re really not planting a church cause we think we’ve got something that every other church has missed. We’re planting a church because Jesus loves to save sinners and He chooses to do so through the ministry of local churches. So, we’ll be working hard not to be inventive, but to be faithful.

    “What makes your church group the 7MR distinct?”
    We’re still forging this community. But the reality we’re pushing towards is becoming a Gospel centered, Jesus exalting, Philadelphia loving, church planting, serving, loving, witnessing community where men and women are transformed by God and sent on mission to love and serve their world.

    Ok, there’s a start. Hopefully that brings more clarity than confusion. Thanks for the questions.

    Jo, do you live in Philly?

  • Avatar Reid says:

    Ajay, we are living the same life man – IKEA, boxes, the whole nine.

    I would love to meet you when we have a chance. We have an Indian family that is going to be part of our core/launch team – I am sending them your blog as they have some family in Philly.

    Peace man. Let me know when you have some time to get together. Maybe we could meet half way – or I could drive down to Philly.


  • Avatar Ajay says:


    Let’s do it bro! I would love to meet up with another brother that is just entering the fray. We’ll find a rest-stop on the Turnpike somewhere.

    We’ll be prayerful for you guys.

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