Yesterday, Dan and I spent afternoon nap time loading up his car for his last solo trek to Santa Barbara before we officially move this Saturday. And let me tell you, it was emotional.
There was something about taking down all of the mirrors and art carefully curated and mindfully hung on these old, plaster walls that really started to affect me.
This is our third move moved in the last two years--and I don't take a lot of pride in saying that. Some moves were expected, some less so. But I can tell you that when we bought this house, we thought it was a pretty-much-forever home. It's old. It's small. It has character. It has a huge backyard with a fruitful fig tree and a front porch where we enjoy sipping coffee in the mornings and watching the children play in the evenings. We pictured our girls riding their bikes to the neighborhood park. We pictured walking them to school and watching them leave our driveway in their first cars. We pictured them graduating high school and (hopefully) leaving the nest. We considered eventually adding on an additional bathroom and extending the back patio. But, sometimes, even the best-laid plans aren't meant to be.
As scary and intimidating as it is for me to accept, God has different plans for this family.
And, no matter how much I think about our impending move to Santa Barbara, I cannot deny God's gentle and graceful Hand in all of it.
I'm not sure I need to give you all of the details, but in every inch of this decision to relocate our family, we have seen God's vision for us. He has continued to open doors we didn't even know existed, and He is even reminding me through events that happened months ago that this has been His plan for quite some time.
And let me say it again, I'm scared.
I have never in my life seen God move so much. I have experienced God tremendously, yes. But never before has He made the path so clear with each step set delicately in place before we take it. Since late July when Dan applied for the position in Santa Barbara, we have not heard God's gentle whisper, but we have heard His loving yet direct voice saying, "Yes, children, this is where I want you right now. Thank you for trusting me."
And hearing God is cool, sure, but trusting Him is overwhelming and frightening for me. Because, if you've met me, you may know I struggle just a bit (wink, wink) with letting go. I love to know MY plan and purpose. I love to have all MY ducks lined up in a neat little row. (And don't you dare try to move one of those ducks out of place!) And while that over-planning and perfectionism has suited ME well in many of MY life's ambitions, I have always found it very difficult to hear God in the clamor of MY coordinating. I am constantly shifting, seeking the next-best-thing for ME and MY family. And that quality absolutely has it's purpose and strengths. But as we know, our best traits can also be our weaknesses, and MY best intentions are often just that--MINE.
And, as a Christ-follower, I've repeatedly struggled knowing that many of my decisions were choices I made because it is what I wanted, and I would fit God somewhere into my plan, knowing full-well that's not quite how loving God was supposed to work.
So ya, I'm terrified. I'm terrified to release control and listen. But, damn, when I do, God sure as hell takes care of everything. I mean, every little detail of this move has God written all over it. It's ridiculous. It's insane. It's divine.
And in all of this I'm learning another lesson about what it means to trust and let go. I think, perhaps, more than listening to God, I'm learning to let my husband lead. I have struggled with this concept for as long as I have been in committed relationships. Submitting power and control and trust to someone--anyone--else does not feel safe for me. And that's why I struggle so much with it in my relationship with God AND why I struggle so much with letting go in my marriage. But I also know this truth: We can be fully intimate when we can be fully known. And while God knows me, I haven't let myself know Him--and I sure as heck have been afraid to let my husband know that yielding, dependent part of me.
Trusting someone else to know what is best for me has never worked out in my life, so why would it work in my marriage? It wouldn't. It couldn't.
And my believing it would or could would take an intervention only God could create. So, here He is. God showed up. And here he is, my husband. He showed up, too.
God is showing me who HE is through trusting my husband. Honestly, my husband is the last person from whom I expected to see God right now. But damn, there He is. There they both are. And it's a beautiful intimidating thing to experience my husband so calm and sure and purposeful but also understanding and patient with me during this transition. I mean, it's hard to leave my family and my home. It's hard to take Farrah out of dance and school and find a new studio and a new preschool. But just as God has made His intentions in all of this so clear, I TRUST (wow, that's crazy for me to say, but I trust) God will find the perfect fit for her school and dance as well.
Moving with kids, away from my hometown, is scary. But leave it up to my four-yer-old to remind me that she will be OK. As if God were speaking through her (and you better believe I know God was speaking through her), she said to me a couple weeks ago as this decision was just setting in: "If I have my mommy, I'm home."
So cue the waterworks. Cue my heart breaking and healing. Cue my recognition that I am, in fact, doing what's best for my family.
So, I need to put it in writing--Thank You, Lord, for showing Yourself to our family in this way. And thank You, that through this move You have helped me begin to unravel some of my deepest fears and issues with intimacy. All of this is such a blessing only You can provide. I'm still scared. But I'm learning to trust. And I'm pretty sure that's all God has ever wanted from me.
A FEW THINGS HELPING ME GET THROUGH THIS WEEK
When I found these dupes for the Lululemon align pants, my jaw pretty much hit the floor. Love the 7/8 length. Love the double pockets. And as I run around my house packing all the things, I've pretty much been living in these.
Momming (especially single-momming, as I've been doing lately) and sleeping don't exactly go hand-in-hand. But this gadget gets me (mostly) through the night. I love how it blocks out the little baby or dog noises that would otherwise wake me up. And the actual fan inside is my favorite. It's so compact that I'm able to travel with it--and I do! I keep one on each nightstand in our room (yes, two), and one in the girls' room.
I'm a firm believer in oil face cleansing. My skin has never looked better and felt so hydrated all the time. Removing that oil can be tricky. And while I used to use a microfiber cloth, I have since migrated to using these little squares that not only remove the oil and makeup, but gently exfoliate as well.