I’ve lived in two different hemispheres. It’s incredible to think that because I envisioned my life so differently than it has become. And frankly, that vision was super narrow. I had God in a box. I only saw as far as the end of my driveway because I couldn’t imagine Him using me any other way.
He just blew me out of the water. Or over it. More like over an ocean.
Then, after throwing the doors wide for me to step through and experience His faithfulness and grace in a whole new way, He brought my focus right back to the beginning.
He brought us back. He closed those doors. And it was painful. It was confusing. But it was so clear that He was moving us into a new season once again.
I spent a lot of time trying to help my family adjust, especially my children. It was such a long year of transition. We spent a lot of time helping one another come to terms with the fact that the life we had built on the mission field was over. God was asking us to trust Him once again as He prepared us for a new work.
Recently, I listened to Jamie Ivey’s podcast with one of my favorite women, Jo Saxton. Jo was sharing about a difficult season in her own life and about the ensuing confusing that came from it. Her words resonated with me as she talked of her frustration and sorrow over what was no longer a part of her world. The way that she was able to move into the new season the Lord had put before her was to take pause and…
I pondered that in regards to my own life and the season that I knew was now behind me. I can choose to be bitter at the issues which resulted from our change of career, the relationships which were left shaky at best, and the new “normal” that often gives us more questions than answers.
Or I can be thankful.
I can look back at the amazing season I just left and thank my Father for His provision of home, friends, ministry, and every necessity (plus a lot of amazing perks living in South America… avocados? HELLO slice of heaven!). Though my friendships aren’t the same long-distance, I can be thankful for those friends in that season. They were perfect for that place and time.
Then I realized. To move forward, I have to look backward. I need to give myself time to grieve, time to process, and time to heal. And through that process, thanksgiving is the salve which brings wholeness to my heart. When I choose to be thankful as I slowly close the door on that last season, I can take a deep breath, refreshed, and turn to look ahead.
And let me tell you, what I see ahead looks pretty incredible. Can’t wait.