The Story

All His Promises are Yes and AmenIf you are one, who likes to read the end of the story, this is not it.  But I guarantee you, it ends well.  I have said it for months to my kids: This ends well.

I have had several people ask me, did we choose to move, because of the climate of Chris’ current work.  No.  Flat out, no.  He would work there until its last day.  He loves where he is and he especially cares about the people there.

We are going, because this vision of three pictures started something new within us. Like a match being struck in our hearts, we began to passionately feel that we are to go to College Station.  Despite our love for this wonderful place, Colorado, and her wonderful people, we know in our very marrow that there is a call to go to College Station and we said Yes.

Now let me be really clear: we are not so ding-dang important that God calls us to do something and not everybody else.  Fact is He truly is writing an IMPORTANT story over each of our lives.  HE is INDEED inviting us to join Him in that story. But often, we either are too busy or our lives are too noisy that we miss it.  Yet, He still invites…we only need to be still to hear the invitation.  And the second part is sometimes, we say No, while clinging to the comfortable things in our hand.

It’s easy to do.  And truly, I have within this very week said forget it.  Let’s just stop going.

My own kids began to pray over me that night and tell me to keep believing.  I tell you, that is something else.  And it is honest.  We can doubt.  And those doubts can be looming and large.  And we can choose.

The next day I awoke with an apology on my lips to everyone and to God.  I reminded the Lord of the parable of the one He called to do something and they said no, but did it anyway.  And another said yes, but did not do it.  I reminded God that my no to Him will always turn around to a yes.  Always.  Because I love Him, I know Him and I trust Him.  Sometimes I falter, though.

Back to the story.  We wrestle with whose story it is with God often.  Is it His or is it mine?  And the answer is that it is both.  But His story is greater than mine.  It is written over an infinite timeline.  And I get to choose to be a part of His story or to not. It is fully my choice.  No one chooses it for me.  No circumstance prevents His story from unfolding as it will.  He is greater.  And what He opens cannot be shut.  He will rescue.  He will delight.

The enemy is also writing a story for us.  And it is packed with lies and hatred–and run by fear.  We can get caught up in the rapids of it and be tossed to and fro by the waves and wind.  We can then excuse our current story, saying we cannot help it.  The winds and waves are too strong.  We are stuck.  But we have bought a lie here.  When we look around us and think we are molded by the circumstances, we BECOME molded by them–for we have given them the power to have sway. But when we look up to the Living Lord Jesus Christ and cry out for Help, He will come running to us and most certainly help.  I dare you to try it.

So facts of where we are right now in the story…

Tuesday, we knew that a BIG announcement was happening at Chris’ work on Wednesday.  We assumed lay offs were happening.  And they did.  40% of the company were laid off.  Chris was not.  Now we could cling to the safety of that–stay there ’til the next job came through and house was sold.  And I truly wanted to self-protect here.  But there were two men and two jobs fully impacted by it.  And Chris wanted to tell his boss what we are doing, so that those two could stay and have the opportunity to continue working.  So he told his boss our story.

That left us feeling very exposed.

His boss came back and asked him to stay until August 14th.  And Chris was given the same severance package everyone else got.  What favor from God.  What a gift! We were hoping, but really not entitled to such a grace.

Right now, we are preparing to head to College Station for the kids to begin school there.  Our home has not yet sold.  The next job interview has not yet happened.

But we feel God leading us in this way–to trust Him fully.  And we are.

I have had some moments of complete terror.  But mostly I feel at peace that all the myriad of details left are fully in God’s hands.  We are prayerful.  We are listening.  And we are not surging ahead on our own.

I keep reminding myself of the LORD’s heart for us–it is FOR our good and not harm. He loves us without any selfish need to control or mar us.  He loves us purely.  He invites us to walk with Him in the cool of the day still.

Right now, our plans are mostly pencil.  We are hoping to see some pieces fall into place this next week. But we do not know how or when they will…eventually they will.  And as I have been telling my kids, I am now telling myself: This ends well, Holly.

PinterestShare

That Place of In-Between

This from Instapray shared by Pam Farrel really encourages me today.

This from Instapray shared by Pam Farrel really encourages me today.

I met a friend last week for coffee and thanked her for inviting me, as I told her there is a weird phenomenon that comes with moving.

It’s like this…we say we are moving, we know God is leading us to do so, we don’t know when, but feel like it is this summer.  And it sort of leaves people at a loss.

They ask questions.  Are you moving, yet?  Has your house sold?  Do you have a job there? When do you think you’ll be moving?

And we are totally at a loss to answer any of those questions.  So it is awkward.

But here is what I told my friend….I feel like we are in a boat, facing in the direction of College Station.  The water is still.  The boat is not moving.  And we have been here FOR DAYS ON END. We cannot go back to shore.  We cannot move forward. We are still and waiting.  It is all in God’s hands.

So if someone wants to come and “meet” with us, they have to row out to where we are.  And that is what is happening now and again.  But on most days, it can be a lonely place.  It is just hard for people to understand and to walk very long in this uncertain place–a place of waiting.  Not many like to wait alongside….but for those who do and who are, I am ever so grateful.

One thing I did not tell my friend at coffee is something Chris remarked about this past weekend.  This environment has served to bring our family closer together.  It just has.  And it is a good thing! We will reap rewards, because of it!

I think the potential problem in relationships with friends is this:  we like to build together.  And to do that it takes time and effort.  But when you find out a friend is moving away, you tend to step back and watch, rather than jump into the story.  So a distance can happen.  And building stops. (For the record, the same thing can happen in leaving a church, which we have also experienced over the past year.  My advice is this: WE ARE ALL ON THE SAME TEAM!  Don’t let the change of a church affect a good friendship! It doesn’t have to be that way.)

Some do not understand why we are moving.  And the fact is….we have been here before ( a few times actually).  We have experienced this before.  Some relationships were distanced for a time and then grew closer again.  Some were completely lost to our sorrow and regret. And some maintained the course and are growing stronger with the years.  It is a part of life.

God is so faithful to bring those far off friends across our path again.  It is His way of weaving.  He ties it all in and uses every interaction we have for good…whether now good or later good.

But the most important factor is this: we are (as best as we know how) listening to and following God’s leading.  When He says go, we go.  And in coming here to Colorado, we can all list thousands of reasons we were blessed and grew in following the LORD.  In going there to College Station, we know that we will experience the same kinds of things–all of us.  For both decisions, we are not picking a location based on our own preferences.  Though we have LOVED living here in Colorado and would love to do so much longer!  We also know that we will love being nearer to Chris’ family and that we will love being back at Texas A&M area and our old church for as long as God wants us there.

I share all this in case some of you are in this place or headed this way.  It is hard to be in the place of in-between.  I want to encourage you to press further into Jesus during these times.  For even on the hardest of days, He is closer than your breath.  He, too, has experienced the same feelings.  Press into reading your Bible–read it aloud even.  Listen to music that stirs your soul. And pour out your heart in those places.  Not an ounce of it is wasted.  It all matters…and is meaningful–especially in the still times of waiting.

God bless you all!

Holly

 

PinterestShare

And Now a Word from Our Sponsor

0621151628

I’m taking a break today from all our moving updates to share these pictures from our Father’s Day….it was a gift from God!

And we saw not only one,0621151757

but TWO moose!0621151818b

0621151258dYesterday, we ran away from home.  In fact we ran away, counting on God to keep all showings at bay.

0621151628aAnd HE DID!

0621151712We drove up to Estes Park, around 0621151346e

Rocky Mountain National Park (our yearly pass runs out on June 30th), and then we ended up at Hernando’s Pizza in Winter Park on our way home.

0621151346d

We have a squeaky tight budget right now (thanks to all the upgrades we have added to our home for sale),

0621151500d

so we planned to have breakfast at home, a picnic lunch, a couple of treats in Estes Park

0621151558a(ice cream and candy!) and then Hernando’s is really the best pizza for the cost.  We even tried a shrimp scampi pizza, and it was amazingly good!

Sometimes when I feel hemmed in by circumstances, a trip away gives me a fresh perspective that I am NOT (we are NOT) hemmed in by those circumstances, but lovingly hemmed in by God Himself.

0621151712e

0621151425So today, while we face a lot of stillness and some seeming rejections, we rest in God’s care.

For He cares for us!

Amen?

PinterestShare

Coming Down, Going Up and Waiting with Joy

11406590_10152999670712087_8040244852427001229_oIt’s been a delightful day.  The temps outside are perfection–windows open, birds tweeting, and the sounds of mowing in the distance.

I am so thankful for a day without a house showing.  We’ve had 9 showings in 15 days, and we are about as weary as can be.  I feel distinctly that God is ordering everything to a certain timing.  And with that comes peace, especially on days like I have had recently.  Let me tell you about them…

Coming Down

A week ago I had a day that reminded me of a moment I experienced when my Chris and I were young marrieds.  We had climbed up Enchanted Rock and came down another way than the regular path. This is where I locked up–completely unable to go up or come down.  I clung to the side of that giant batholith and refused to move.  In terror, I could not, would not move.  Chris had to gently talk me down–one movement at a time.  It was with complete joy that I arrived safely at the bottom.

So was this day. I felt like I could not, would not move forward or go back.  Sometimes it is like that with God, too.  He gently talks us down.

Going Up

Another day, after several of readying the house for showing (which feels like a marathon and is great exercise for sure!), I felt like I was on a several mile hike to the top of a mountain that my Chris and I had taken before.  It was at the point that I had not an ounce of energy left…and yet I had to exert it to reach the top.  Sitting for a rest, drinking water and eating a Clif bar doesn’t cut it.  There are some places you reach, where it takes supernatural strength to keep on going.  I actually have reached this kind of day on several occasions lately.  And I have asked God to give me strength, again and again. He has given it each time–strength for the day and bright hope for tomorrow, right?

Waiting in Joy

Then there is this…Psalm 25:5

Lead me in your truth and teach me,
    for you are the God of my salvation;
    for you I wait all the day long.

This just really stood out to me this past week, as I considered that I had indeed been waiting on God all day long.  But I thought of HOW David waited.  I believe he waited in joy and anticipation of the GOOD things God was unfolding.  I think sometimes I wait in a huff.  And truly?  What parent wants to give to a huffy child?  We need to change HOW we wait.

I keep telling the kids that this journey is like a present that we are opening one piece of tape at a time.  We still have a lot that we cannot answer, but this we can.  God started this gloriously unfolding journey. And HE will complete it.

To close today, I just want to say how thrilled I am to hear that dear Elisabeth Elliot has met her Jesus face to face this day.  It makes me long.  I love her so–and pray that God would make me as wise and patient as she was.  What a set apart woman she was!

PinterestShare

May Currents

It’s been a busy-bee month, so posting hasn’t been an option.  I am thankful for the work that God brought my way last month.  It has enabled us to DO so much work around the house to ready it for sale.  Professional pictures are being taken, and it is going on the market tomorrow.  So, needless to say, today is packed.  If you can imagine, we lay in bed every night and groan from the ache of all the hard labor.  It is a good ache, but OH! How we look forward to days not doing all of that.


I could write a regular post, but I will be honest with you.  As I told our missionary son, Jamie, the other day, all I would write is that nothing we can see has changed, except that the house is now ready for sale.  We have a job here–no job there.  We think the time frame is late June-mid July for the move.  We pray that God is doing the preparations and working out the timing in a way that makes it all make sense on the other side.  But there are a thousand ways it can all play out.  All we know is that we feel like now is the time to put it on the market.  We feel a peace about it…and moments of terror and fear.  It is exactly what God is writing for our journey.


I’m excited to say, too, that we are tickled about moving at the same time as our friends, Rene and Phillip Sandifer AND also my friend, Sarah Francis Martin and her family to College Station.  It was part of the confirmation I got on this day.  We all have children in the same ages and stages, so it is exciting to see how God will unfold that.  My friend Bobbie, too, has been such a wonderful friend, who lives there already, in giving us some feedback about the locations we are looking at to buy a house and even in choosing the right schools for our kiddos.  My friend Annette, who also lives there, has connected me to her sister, who is over the reading-helps programs for the elementary schools, which is so vital for our Sydney, as she continues to learn with her struggle with dyslexia.  My friend Christa also lives in CS.  We were in Campus Crusade Bible study together over 20 years ago.  I am excited to be in community with all of these–plus our beloved pastor Chris, who has been cheering us on and praying.  Finally, I am praying for other friends, who are looking to move back there sometime in the next year or so. It would be a sheer taste of Heaven to have them near.


Will you pray for us, as we walk forward by faith?  We know that we know that we know that God started this and He will most certainly finish it.  But sometimes we feel afraid.  So prayer is vital!


Well now, here are my May currents.  I would love to hear about yours in the comments!


Current Reads: Rachel Anne Ridge’s Flash the Donkey: The Homeless Donkey Who Taught Me About Life, Faith and Second Chances and J.K. Rowling’s  Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (I’m re-reading this series, just for fun!)


Current Playlist: I’m just about to make a summer mix CD, so I would LOVE to hear your favorites right now.  But I have been listening to our spring mix (below) AND Christy Nockels new album, Let it Be Jesus.

Spring Mix 2015

* Bethel Music God, I look to You
* Tedashi, Lecrae, Trip Lee, Derek Minor, and Andy Mineo Come Alive
* TobyMac Beyond Me
* King and Country Shoulders
* Kris Allen Live Like We’re Dying
* One Republic I lived
* 33Miles Arms that hold the universe
* Toby Keith Wanna talk about me
* Shepphard Geronimo
* Guardians of the Galaxy – Blue Swede – Hooked on a Feeling
* Chris August The Maker
* Hawk Nelson Drops in the Ocean
* Brandon Heath Girl of My Dreams
* Hillsong Touch the Sky
* Kirk Franklin Revolution/ Awesome God
* Annie I think I’m Gonna Like it Here
* Nicole C Mullen Everyday People
* Puppini Sisters I Will Survive
* Lauren Diagle How Can it Be
* Bethel Music and Jenn Johnson Nearness



Current Color(s):  White and Navy Blue


Current Food: Made the best Shrimp the other day!  You should try it!


11182809_10152902095662087_4153983457048973129_oCurrent Favorite Favorite: In the midst of all the doing, I have also been doing a lot of BEing here at Fox Run Park,


Current Addiction: My boss Sheila and her other assistant, Tammy, came to stay a few weeks back.  They brought me the best Maple candies.  I love them.  They are hard candies that last a long time in your mouth, which has been ideal for the days of painting molding along the floor.  :)

Current Wish List: I really am just praying for a job for Chris and a timeline laid out for our family.


Current Need:  I need a LOT of help today for my long list.  But I never ask for it–outside my family.  It is stupid, I know.  But I am thankful for my friend Tiffany, who offered to come by later today.  Just the offer meant so much to me.



Current Triumph: School is out for summer!  We made it another year!!  I so stink at keeping up with our four.  Really…it comes from when flying by the seat of my pants fails. Fortunately, the kids all know this, and they help things work more smoothly by taking responsibility for their own stuff.


Current Annoyance:  Really nothing.  Not feeling annoyed lately, just REALLY TIRED.

Current Blessing(s):  Our house is going on the market tomorrow!  It is finally here!


Current Outfit:  Siesta Fiesta t-shirt and yoga pants (painting today!)


Current Excitement: We are planning on going to the Sand Dunes soon!  I really love that place!


Current Project(s): Knitting some large wash cloths and really, the house….all of it, every bit of minutia you can think of


Current plans for the day:  Finishing our final final list for the house and taking Kylie to get braces.


That is all!  Share your currents here in the comments.  Or your favorite music–help me out on our summer mix, please!


Publishing this with a prayer of blessing for ALL, who read it.   With Love to your house from mine.  Holly
PinterestShare