The kids are all at school, the husband is away and here I sit alone with my thoughts.
I’ve been asked many times over recent weeks how we knew where we were going and how we made the decision to buy a house when ours has not sold. The answer is easy and it’s complicated. It’s easy because it all comes down to FAITH and WHO I put my trust in. It’s complicated because it would be very easy for me or anyone in a similar situation to be swayed by selfish desires, money and convenience.
About 8 months ago we were going through some stuff in our family. “Stuff” meaning normal family issues but also the added stresses of feeling alone in our community plus we had a teenage daughter dealing with some pretty heavy issues. I’m looking back now thinking that God was probably trying to get our attention a year ago but we weren’t listening very well. And so, it took some ugly situations to get us to a point of realizing the need to leave and find a new home. In a very short period of time I went from being a stay-at -home mom of 4 kids to a worried, frazzled and grieving mother of adolescents. Nothing like a guy getting his paws on your daughter to throw you in to mama bear mode.
So, in March we began to regularly browse the MLS real estate website and look for an acreage somewhere else. But where? We made a list of what we wanted and what we didn’t want. Now this is not necessarily the end all and be all of your future but it helps to narrow things down. It’s kind of like circling items in the Christmas Wish Book knowing you’ll be lucky if you get one or heaven forbid TWO of those!! We made a couple of “covert mission” trips to southwestern Saskatchewan, the Saskatoon area and then the Calgary area. Leroy talked to former co-workers, bosses and colleagues about the market, work and what the future looked like. In May we thought we had the beginnings of a plan and so we listed our house. Backtracking a bit~ God had “told” me(kind of a thought that came into my head) that I would have my patience tried and tested and that I would need to learn what faith really is before we would move.
The reality is that we had very few showings, in fact as of today we’ve only shown the house 4 times in 4 months. We had no peace about any place we looked at. We had no leads for work,school or churches. We were coming up empty at every turn. Many times people asked us if maybe we should just stay. But that wasn’t an option and it’s something that most people just don’t get. We love our acreage, we have great neighbours but it wasn’t enough. We were fish out of water, sailors without a boat and pilgrims in a foreign land. I often thought about Moses leading the children of Israel through the wilderness. That’s exactly how we felt; we knew we had a home somewhere else but getting there just seemed exhausting and pointless some days.
I began a journey to praise in spite of the doubts. Our family and marriage were as stagnant and dry as a dried up slough. In the midst of my prayers, my seeking and my fears, God spoke. Now, when people say that God spoke to them it always sounds a bit funny and sometimes even phoney. But you have to understand that God uses many voices, many tools and many ways of speaking to all of us. Sometimes He speaks to me through a verse in His word, a praise and worship song. Sometimes it’s through one of my kids’ insight into a situation. Sometimes it’s a letter in the mail, an e-mail, a phone call. Other times it can be something as random as finding a note I wrote myself years earlier but it so applicable and profound for the current situation. Whatever the case, God spoke. He used some wise women who know how to hear Him when they pray and they passed along some wonderful counsel to me. He also used timing and being in the right place to SHOW me where to go. All in all, when I started to listen and we were open to anything, the pieces fell into place very quickly. Driving down a highway I saw a sign and I followed it in 4 kms to a house for sale. When I called the agent and she met me there, it took less than 5 minutes for me to know that I had found our new home. I even called Leroy and told him, “I’ve found it”. It’s amazing what Peace can do. When God’s peace is all over something then you know it’s right.
Today, as I spoke with the high school principal about my kids and she asked specifically about how each one was doing, I realized that we had made the right decision to move quickly before the start of school . If you’ve ever moved to a new school or a new community you know how overwhelming and scary it can be. We could have waited till our house sold but we would have moved in the middle of a term and that would have been horrible for these kids. As it turns out, they are all finding their groove, new friends, new interests and we’re all finding that this move was right.
There are still a whole bunch of “firsts” to get through and I’m sure there will be some doubts , some tears and some worries. But I’m thankful that I didn’t question God and I’m so grateful that He’s leading us. Where do people go if they don’t have the Lord?
One of the best songs out there right now: