One theme in my life lately has been LEARNING from the Lord. I was telling Chandler this morning that I feel that my life has changed so much since we began this journey of pursuing missions. God has allowed so many circumstances to come our way in the past 2 years that He has used to TEACH me, to GROW me, and to (prayerfully) make me LOOK more like Him.
Just when I think one season of learning has come to an end, just when I think these “growing pains” are subsiding, God seems to send another wave of LEARNING.
As you know, this past month has been one of the most challenging months we have faced as we searched for a permanent home. God TAUGHT us to really seek Him and we were brought to a place where we had to choose if we were really going to TRUST Him, even when times got tough. Well, through MANY prayers (from us, and YOU!) God provided a home.
The funny thing about the home He has provided is it is another “training ground” for us. Go figure!!!
So, of all the places, we live in an apartment above an old general store, who would have thought?!? This is actually a historical landmark around here…pretty interesting. The store is no longer working, but it is still in beautiful condition. So this little apartment is nestled in the middle (and I mean middle) of the Blue Ridge Mountains. It’s absolutely breathtaking. I feel so close to the sky, like I could reach out and touch it. The store is part of a farm so we have chickens and guineas running all over the place – there is actually a mama guinea laying in a nest right outside our stairs…weird! I’m thankful for those ugly little creatures though because they eat all the ticks around here! There are 3 cows in the pasture nearby – but one is heading to the butcher in a few days – poor guy!
So we stopped by Kroger to pick up some groceries when we were on our way here last Tuesday so that we wouldn’t have to make another trip to town (because it takes about 10 plus miles to get there, which may not seem like a lot…but it is!). So, I plug in the fridge when we get here…NOTHING. No cold air. Just an annoying little buzz every two minutes. Thankfully our landlord has a little cabin on the property with a fridge we have been able to use…but that means going outside and running across the road every time we need something cold. Good training? Yes! Once we are on the mission field, we may not always have the conveniences of “home,” but this has taught us in a rather strange way to be FLEXIBLE. (p.s. a new fridge did just arrive yesterday and we are SO grateful for that).
Another interesting fact about this little gem of a place is there is NO phone reception or internet (well, unless we go to the neighbors and awkwardly walk around their home in search for a couple bars of service). There have been days that Chandler has had to go into town to work and I have been out here with the kids for hours (like eight J) and the only way I could communicate to the “outside world” would be by going to the neighbors. This is not bad or scary to me, I just see it as another form of “training”…and training is not always EASY. I miss being able to hop online and write an email or a blog. In fact, this blog was written in a word document and then posted in a parking lot! Haha. However, there is a good chance this could be the case in Tanzania. I have to CHOOSE to see this as another way that God prepares my heart for what we may face one day.
So yeah, between the rooster’s cock-a-doodling in the mornings, to no fridge and then lack of communication, I think God is being GRACIOUS to prepare this feeble heart for what is to come. He IS good, guys!
I will close with these verses (familiar as they may be) that are becoming dearer to my heart with each passing day –
“Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, AND LEARN FROM ME, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” – Matthew 11:28-30
Never before did I see the “learn from me” part of this verse…but right now, this is the season I am in. Learning. And it is good.
Thought I’d add a few pictures of the home God has provided for us…
(The girls have a loft upstairs with their room PLUS a playroom, which is such a blessing…I just don’t have time to post a pic of that!)
Thought I’d throw in some pictures of these little cuties too.