So, I've been a little MIA this year, ok ALOT. That usually means ALOT is going on behind the scenes either physically, emotionally, mentally, spiritually, or all of the above. Let's just say this last year has been all of the above.
And I started to save this big news for the yearly Christmas letter, but it was just too much, so here I am with plenty of unlimited space to tell the whole story because quite frankly it's taken me all year to really process it anyway=)
In July of 2014, our family of four will be moving to Irvine, California. Sunny, southern California.
California? What? Am I not a Cobb County Georgia peach born and bred? Does not every immediate family member on every side of mine and Joey’s family (minus a handful) live within an hours’ radius of Atlanta? Isn’t California a 5-hour plane ride away on an opposite coast? Yes. On all accounts, yes. Yet, I can’t wait to go!
How you ask? How did God convince this Georgia girl--who never wanted anything, but to raise her children around her immediate family, who never wanted anything but for her children to grow up with their cousins and aunts and uncles and grandparents all just around the corner—how did He convince me to move to California?
Step one: God humbled me severely. Like "I-needed-antidepressants" severely. 2012 was a rough year.
But then, step two: He restored me fully. I'm talking a fullness of joy and freedom I haven't felt in years, but I warn you it only came at the end of some intense counseling.
Step three: He took me through the book of Genesis for a year in BSF and showed me how all the great men and women of promise all followed a similar path. He taught me--IS teaching me--how to trust Him. He showed me through Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Joseph that nothing is too big for Him to dream for you, and then He showed me that He, Creator God, would give me a big dream and that He would fulfill it in His time, in His way, for His glory. And I started to get excited!
It’s funny how following in God’s will and reading His Word and actually trying to put it into practice will get you to a point where you don’t even recognize the person you use to be because that’s exactly what God has used to change me in a year’s time. I am so grateful He took His time to prep the soil of my heart before leading Joey to take this leap of faith with our family!
In the midst of my sweet Savannah Veale’s death this past year, Jesus has shown me the truth of pouring your heart and everything out to Him (Psalm 62:8), casting all your cares on Him (1 Peter 5:7), and letting go to let Him be God (Deuteronomy 29:29).
So when the phone call came the end of May that Chick-fil-A wanted to send us to California, I heard God clear as day say, “Will you trust me? Will you go? Will you leave your family behind and go to a foreign land that I have prepared for you? Will you trust only in Me?” And after spending a year in study telling myself, telling Him that I would take the leap of faith, risk my comfort, forsake it all whatever it may be if He asked, what choice did I really have?
I will never forget the moment God cemented this decision for me. I was pouring over the choice in tears, struggling with the fear and the temptation to not trust God’s will when I asked God directly to make it clear, to give a sign, anything at all that would let me know His will was for us to move. Not ten minutes later, a blog post showed up in my email with the title Instant Obedience, and I had my answer. Abraham left immediately. He picked up his things and went without a question recorded, without a plan or all the details in place. He didn't even know where he was going! (At least I know that much.) No, Abraham simply obeyed, and that is exactly what Joey and I feel we need to do—simply obey and trust. And our days have been filled with a peace and joy that is inexplicable. It is a true treasure to live your days knowing you are in the center of God’s will for your life!
So for those of you wondering how we ever got to this decision, there's the story. There are a million unanswered questions ahead of us on this adventure. My emotional state is a roller coaster at best right now. But in the midst of it all, I am so grateful to my Lord Jesus Christ for providing a constant, firm foundation that He has built into my life through all the circumstances of the last few years. He is my Rock, and there is no other like Him. He truly does work all things for our good and His glory, even the hard things, even the really, really hard things.
Be encouraged! He's still writing your story too! He never forgets about a single one of His children, and His dreams are so much bigger than ours. Let go. Trust Him. And if it's not the most freeing place you've ever experienced in your life, I'd like to know what is=)