Where have you been?
I realize it has been a long time since you have heard from me! If you aren’t in my facebook group (Less Than Perfect Christian Mamas) then you may be out of the loop of what is going on in my life.
To condense it all, I will just start by saying, we moved from Oregon to Tennessee! If you only want the short version, stop there. For a few more details, read on.
We have been talking about moving for a few years with the desire to be in a place that our children felt good about raising their own children. We researched several different states and consistently felt like the Lord was saying, Tennessee. I joined a facebook group for Middle Tennessee homeschoolers over a year ago just to see what people were talking about and to understand the culture. From there, I met a Christian homeschool mom who was a realtor. We started talking and in February, my husband and I flew out to meet her and tour some homes. At that point, we believed it would still be years until we would be ready or able to move. Of course, the year 2020 has brought all sorts of surprises and life changes.
God’s timing is perfect!
Well, the Lord has a way of redirecting our plans. On July 22 I felt an urgency and a release from the Lord saying, “It’s time”. My husband and I talked about it and decided to pray for a clear answer. Andrew told me that if we found the perfect house, like PERFECT, we would do it. I asked the 3 people I knew in Tennessee to “pray us there and tell us if there is anywhere out in the country that has good internet”.
After wasting a whole day on Zillow I realized that if the Lord had a house for us at this time, He would have to show it to us. I knew my focus was not to be on a house but on my people. Both my family, and those in person and online that I could encourage in motherhood. The next time I hopped on facebook there was a message from one of the ladies I had reaches out to. She gave me the name of a town to look up. I typed it into Zillow and up popped THE house. That quickly! I kid you not, 4 days after feeling the Lord say, “It’s time”, we found the house. Three days after that, we were in contract. It was a house we had not seen in person, in a town we had never been to and in a state we had only stepped foot in twice.
Saying goodbye to some, hello to others:
who has given us a grand welcome!
So we began the moving process. Packing up our home of nearly 22 years and making plans for the move and the drive across country. We sold things, donated and packed. During this whole thing, the Oregon wildfires started. We were on the edge of an evacuation line and wondered if we would move our belongings or only go with what we had in our car. We were prepared to go with just our children and start new. The winds changed and blew the fires in the other direction. We loaded the moving truck and sent it on it’s way. Unfortunately with the fires looming, this much abbreviated our opportunities to connect with friends in Oregon for goodbyes.
Before we even left Oregon, I had connected with a homeschool mom in my Facebook mamas group who lived in the area where we were going. As busily as I was making plans to leave our long time home and community, she was making plans to receive us. The timing of our moving truck was delayed and we started to learn the flexibility necessary in a move like this. A beautiful mama and 5 of her children came right over when our truck arrived. They helped us move in enough to find a bed and be settled for the night. The following morning Mellissa, the first mom whom I had been chatting with online, had rounded up 21 people (children, teens and adults) to come and unload the rest of our truck. In one hour flat the truck was empty and we had met some amazing people.
This same group of mamas has completely embraced us. I joined them for a mom’s luncheon within a week of our arrival. Then, our whole family was invited to attend the annual barn dance a few days after that. The barn dance showcased a “clogging” class (similar to a recital). All families were also encouraged to come in costume (which were loaned to us!) for the event. We were encouraged to join right in with an English Country dancing type choreography as well as a little line dancing!
We have so many church invitations it will take us months to work through them. We have an instant community who has been available to answer all of our questions and befriend us.
Where God guides, He provides!
We are completely charmed with our new home and community. It is strange to be away from what we have known as home for our whole lives. However, we know that God has brought us here. We know that He has a plan and that we can continually trust in Him daily along the way. He is faithful. When I felt that urgency of the Lord saying, “It’s time”, I believe He also said, “I will help”. Isn’t that how our Lord is? He did not abandon us. He did not say that we had to figure things out on our own or make our own way. He provided a way for us. He goes before us and He looks to the details that we didn’t even know needed attention.
Is there something you are navigating in your life right now that brings more questions than answers? Are you on the edge of big decisions or life changes? Oh dear sister, can I just encourage you to pour your heart out to the Lord. He is listening, watching and waiting to hear from you. I would love to hear what He is doing in your life. Make sure you take the opportunity to share what the Lord has done.
As I settle in and get back to a routine, I hope to spend more time with you.