This here is Washington State.
It is Not Colorado.
It is Not California.
But it will hold the same name.... home.
The Lord is good... all the time. And even in our ever-so-long desert experience, He continued to show up, do what He does best, and as we watched and prayed, our hearts moved with His. His desire became ours.
We often ask ourselves, why we are led on so many adventures and others stay in one place for-ever. Honestly, we still don't have the answer other than we are willing to go. Our children have this heart of adventure as well. Maybe it's the nature vs. nurture thing. Maybe it's God's way for us to live out the dreams he gave us. Hey, I did want to be a missionary before I met my man 25 years ago!
So a glimpse into our last year and a story of God's unfailing love and provision....
April 2013, I wandered through the Bible House and stumbled onto a Ray Vander Laan video series, In the Desert. Thought it looked intriguing. We've always enjoyed and been challenged by his series, we could use it as a family bible study this summer so, I bought it. Little did I know God was working upstream already.
May 2013, my sweet man told me the company was making some changes. We have been here too may times to count. I kissed him good-bye, went to work and didn't give it a second thought. A few hours later, I found out this time, THIS time, we are affected. What? No job. Are you serious?
This began the deep introspection and search for the what, why and how? We covered the 5 W's and 1 H in one afternoon..... and then we prayed.
Last day with my teaching job was in May. I was ready to launch a home-school business. Optimum word there: I
The summer led us into great conversations with our children and times of seeking after God's heart for our family. Each us started feeling parched from this desert we were in. Where were our friends? How come we seem to be in this alone yet together? We knew the refiner's fire was working, we just had to allow it to be. And God showed up, over and over again, he showed up. Brought laughter when we needed it and tears, trying to figure out this Dream we thought was here in Colorado. Could it really take a turn like this?
Summer 2013, my dear brother, sister-in-love and kiddos move back to California. For while I felt like I was being kicked in the stomach. They moved to the same town where I DO have friends, I LOVE the people and they got to go there? Now we are in Colorado alone. The refiner's fire is still burning. All the while God is asking... Am I still good?
We still didn't know when our last day with the company would be. Gabe moved home planning for his own adventure to California. That didn't quite work out; God had other plans for our boy. I love having him here 'cause the time is coming where he will make his own home. I'm secretly treasuring this time together. Again God showed up. I decided I'd look for work. A 1st grade position opened up at my school, just another campus. We prayed and we prayed some more. Again, God showed up. The summer was feeling hot and dry and I'm not talking about the devasting fire that was close to our home. Then we had a reprieve, a time of filling up our cup I'd say. The six of us went to California for my nephew's wedding; surrounded by family and laughter, sweet tea and warm days. It's was perfect.
August 2013, time for more change. Becca left for her senior year at WWU, Boo is going to school and working like a crazy woman for her spring adventure in Spain, Gabe is traveling with his job plus dating the sweetest gal. Side note: (we LOVE her!) Lina is jumping into 9th grade with volleyball, classes and girl drama. Navigating new waters for ALL of us. I'm learning a new curriculum and Terrell... well, he's keeping his head in the game, watching his job disappear, waiting.
Fall 2013, T's truck is totaled, Gabe had shingles, still waiting. God keeps asking... Am I still good?
December 2013, Will we make it through this month too? Again, God showed up.
January 2014, T knows the day. January 24: He will no longer have work. He began interviewing, putting out feelers, networking but all the while being patient. Not rushing. Jobs would show up and we would say there? Noooo, not there? No surely we would stay here. Again, God showed up. He knew how long it would take for us to walk this one out. He prepared our hearts. We never once doubted Him. Quite honestly, we just didn't know what to expect.
January 22nd, 2014, a fellow co-worker told Terrell that a job was open; someone was moving on. He called, did all the steps he should and waited. He was asked, we were asked, "Are you willing to move to Vancouver?" Are we? Oh boy.. are we?? I remember sending Terrell an email from work outlining four or five points. God knew it was time and all this heat, all this time in this desert was preparing us for this moment. And He asked again: Am I still good? This would mean our children going in separate directions. We want to see our children. We want our family close. This would mean RAIN instead of snow. We love snow. This would mean moving but we love adventure. Yes God, you are good. We trust you.
January 24th, we sent out a very and I do mean very specific text: Pray that the door would be completely open and so big we can run through it OR that the door would be slammed shut with a lock on it. No questions.
I got that text from my man," You ready to move to Vancouver?"
Same day his job ended, a new one began. Again, God showed up.
And the new adventure begins...
How all the details will work out, we are still in prayer about. We do know we will be leaving the beautiful state of Colorado this summer and calling home Washington. Oh but don't fear.... we will still wear our Broncos jerseys! Where all the children will land is unsure. God has a plan for them too. Some will be with us, others probably here for awhile. I am looking forward to investing more in Lina's life this next year, exploring Washington and Oregon. I'm looking forward to a quick 6 hour drive to my folks and a10 hour drive to our family in California. I'm looking forward to being a part of God's plan. How exciting is that?!
Over and over again, we knew His plan was at work. We felt blind and lonely but never questioned his faithfulness. He always showed up.
Always has, always will.
Reality Check: I see on the FB regularly the words "God Is Good" after a special event or a blessing in someone's life. I stop and ask, but would you still think He's good if you didn't have this? What if it went another way. Could you still say He's good? and then I ask myself the same question. What makes us think God is good only when things are going our way. Can't He be good because he IS? What makes us a privileged bunch? God loves us. Period. He is good. Period. Life sometimes just sucks. Turn on the news and we see that everyday. But that doesn't change who God is. It just doesn't.
Can you say He is good today? How about when the Refiner's Fire is turned up? Can you then? I know I ask myself that very question.
Oh God teach me that you are good even in the desert.
Thanks for Listening,
Mrs. Tuna Jones