I tried to write this last week, and somehow, I ended up writing the previous post. So we’ll try again this afternoon . . .
Over the past few months, Mark and I have been praying, talking, thinking, and attempting to make one very big decision. If you’ve been reading this blog lately, then you can guess what has been the focus of our deliberation — a move to Edinburgh, Scotland. It hasn’t been an easy decision; we have not approached it lightly at all. If anything, we’ve done more hesitating than anything else as we’ve not wanted to make the wrong decision, haven’t wanted to act too quickly, and haven’t wanted to do anything out of the wrong heart or motivation. We’ve really just wanted to make the right decision with the right heart and for the right reasons. That’s the result of two thinking + really wanting to do right individuals. So that’s been a lot of our focus over these past few months. And we never planned on my heading out to Edinburgh for a week; that really came out of nowhere and was a shock to us. But it has lined up perfectly with all that has happened recently.
So how do two well meaning, not wanting to miss it or make any bad decisions, just wanting God’s will, individuals decide on whether or not to pack up the family, commit to being missionaries, and move an ocean away. Yes, for Mark it’s like moving to another state; whereas for me it’s like moving to another country. But for both of us it is leaving our current home and country. We’d be leaving our first house, the only home that our children know, the place that we thought we were putting roots into. Yes, the first half of our 6 years here were filled with frustration, tension, learning the hard way, and many adjustments. But the past few years have settled into this rhythm of working, taking care of little ones, spending time with my family and our church family. We’ve settled into a flow that I had come to be mostly content with. So to now think of pulling up roots, getting our house into shape and ready to sell, trying to pay off all our debt, filling out immigration paperwork (AGAIN), and purging/packing/selling all our belongings feels very overwhelming. I can’t really even dive into all the emotions that I feel when I think of all of that. I’ve found myself stopping to look at the baby’s room and thinking about how it has been the nursery for all three of my kids, and then I think about taking down all the baby decor and I could sit and cry . . . how do we pack up so many memories and say goodbye?
Nor can I think about the fact that Mark will have to make some decisions about his greencard – keeping it, giving it up, or applying for dual citizenship (each of those options involves a lot of decisions and $$$).
Nor do I think about never living in Colorado again or taking my children from their grandparents here.
Nor do I want to sit down and figure out how to move a dog or how to apply for all the visas/passports we’ll need.
There are just so many factors, so many thoughts, so many things that come into mind when we stop to think about this decision that it would be very easy to get mental/emotional about it all. Our heads could easily talk us out of it before we’ve even begun.
So as we have prayed, talked, talked with my family, and then as I walked through the city of Edinburgh, these things keep coming back to me over and over:
–Mark and I just want to follow Jesus. We want to go where He says go. We also want to be laborers in the Harvest, and as we keep putting this before the Lord, we just get a green light. We also feel that this is the timing. Nothing before now has been the right timing, but this clearly is.
–It’s not without cost. We have very much thought through the cost of what this move will mean for us. Very much, and if anything, we probably need more encouragement that there will be blessing ahead due to our obedience. But I just want to emphasize that we know that this coming year of pulling up roots will be hard. Transition and then adjusting to life in a city, in a different country, away from friends and family will also be hard. But we also know that there is blessing in obedience and we are very much asking for God’s favor.
–If there is one thing that I know more than anything else, it’s that God is calling us to a new thing. He is asking us to step out of our comfort zone, to walk over the chicken line, and to pursue a life of giving our all for Him. I have not idea how to start a Bible school, how to live and work so closely with a team of people, how to raise funds, how to homeschool my children, how to live in a very expensive city (on a currency that is worth very little in that city). I don’t know the first thing about how to do what we’re considering. I don’t know what will happen when we step out. I just feel that we are to go and as we step out, He will meet us. He will go with us. He will care for us as we walk and trust Him.
And I’m wording all of this very poorly. Maybe because the theme song of Frozen is playing in the background, which is actually funny, because letting go is exactly where we’re at. We’re letting go of financial stability, letting go of a safe home, letting go of our church family, letting go of our possessions, our home, our living within 5 minutes of our family. We’re stepping out into a very big unknown . . . and that brings a lot of emotions.
So I just want to end this with a few more thoughts:
We have started the process of slowly purging our house, which is a giant job. This past week, it worked out that my mom’s neighborhood was having a community garage sale, so she invited us to take part. I gathered up as many baby clothes, baby items, and just extra stuff as I could, and sold them and also gave them away. We also decided to put some furniture up for sale, and it felt very final. Like wow, a year from now, we could be moving. Wow. Yet God is so good in how He works, because we just happened to pop by my mom’s neighbor who was also doing a garage sale. They were also selling a lot of baby things, but in the back corner, they had this newer, very nice looking stove for sale at a very good price. We have so needed a new stove as I can barely get the two big burners on ours to work. And a stove has been on our list of things we would have to do in order to sell this house. So we purchased the stove, and as we did, I felt like it was another confirmation that God is on our side. He is paving the way for us to move forward. Yes, we have many, many mountains to climb in the next year. We also have our normal lives to live as we continue working our jobs and as our boys will both be in school, so it will be a very busy year to say the least. But as we slowly step out and say yes to God, I keep seeing these little miracles/confirmations from Him. It’s been encouraging. It’s making things feel not so scary, which is always good.
In conclusion, I have no idea where I will be sitting next June. I have no idea how we will do everything that needs to be done in the next year either. I do know though that we will need to walk very closely to our Guide and our Comforter. I know that our faith will be stretched, but I also know that He will prove Himself to be strong. He will bring us through. He is inviting us on an adventure with Him, and because He is so good, I know the adventure will be good. I have full confidence that He is going with us, and I also have full confidence that He does all things well. So as we keep saying yes, keeping trusting, and keep obeying, good will come.
And I guess this is the beginning of a new chapter and maybe even a new segment to this blog . . . stay tuned.