Moments flash through my memory tonight as I sit alone watching dusk sketch its outline of Pikes Peak in front of me:
Doug walking the isle at church last spring, to kneel and pray, to lay it all down, to present our family to the Lord anew. The girls and I watched from our seats, holding hands, in tears. Somehow we knew the words he carried and lay down at that altar.
The verse he prayed over us for so long (almost 2 years) which hung on our wall as the last thing taken out of our Minnesota home. Every box gone, every floor cleaned, every closet empty, yet it stayed until Doug walked out the door. He still carries it with him daily in his bag.
The moment Doug instructed us to head for Colorado when our epic school road trip ended. Such a long journey to that moment.
The moment I realized he had been let go at work and we were now officially on a new journey with only the Lord as our security. As if there was ever anything else securing us?!?
The days and nights when the pain of leaning over the cliff of unbelief pierced like swords.
The miracles of Provision I have seen.
Watching the girls watch us - ever learning, ever processing, ever reminding me.
This path of watching and waiting for our family has not been easy. It has stripped us of every comfort. We have lived with less than ever in our lives, lived on less than ever in our lives. Our marriage has been attacked, our friendships sifted, our savings depleted, our table sparse. We have found ourselves empty handed over and over. Over and over.
Still today no furniture in our home, neighbors whispering behind our backs about us being fugitives or something crazy- supposedly hiding out in our house with nothing. Seriously? Come on. Were used to the back stabbing now. But we still feel the pain.
Still wearing the same 5 outfits we packed back in September. So.sick.of.those.outfits.
And yet, there is this current of deep satisfaction, deep joy, deep thankfulness. And then there are the miracles. Truly every week we see the Hand of God Provide in ways which are inexplicable. As Doug said yesterday, "seeing all of this makes me want to tell everyone about the Lord, regardless of who or where they are". Smile breaks across my face at those words, remembering prayers prayed.
My mom was here for a week, just flew out a couple of days ago. She did well adjusting to life on airmattresses, no furniture, fewer meals. My mom, the ultimate consumer, who considers her legacy to be "teaching her granddaughters how to leave a good tip." While here, she honestly shared with me me she doesnt "get" our choices, wouldnt want to live life the way we do. I cry as she tells me. Not at all because my feelings are hurt. I hold her hand across the table and let the tears fall....for many reasons. I understand what she means. She tells me she simply isnt willing to give everything! I understand that too. Tears still fall. No one really wants to give everything. I mean, people talk about it in coffee shops and write of it on blogs, but when it comes down to it, no one really wants to give everything. I appreciate her honesty. I appreciate where we are, that we can talk and live so oppositely and yet so lovingly. She doenst understand a Christmas without gifts, a table without 3 meals a day, a bank account without a balance. My mom doesnt wait on anything or anyone. Instead of temporal or training, she sees what seemingly has been lost.
And yet at closer inspection, what have we lost? Really, what? I actually see gain. I see answered prayers. And with further conversation, she does too. She says she wants to get on my prayer list. I laugh knowing she has no idea the "loss" I pray for. I tell her it has nothing to do with me. I thank God for this new place where we are in relationship, my mother and I. Never before have we been so comfortably frank with one another - each with so much love for the other.
Yes, our life is uncomfortable and odd, full of "radical transitions" and countercultural choices. But that is what I prayed for, still pray for - for His will to be done in our home as it is in Heaven, regardless the cost - for us to each know Him in the depths of our hearts, to live for Him alone. That is exactly who I want to be, who I pray for our girls to be. From what life does that kind of faith grow? From a typical American teenage experience? From a comfortable corporate or creative job where ends meet every month and no boat is ever rocked? No, in my experience that kind of faith grows from people who risked it all, diving headfirst into the Lord. And most of the time those people never (EVER) planned to dive, but rather were led to the end of a diving board of sorts and faced with turning back toward the world (their old gods) or taking the plunge.
Certainly this is not what we would have chosen and yet its results are yielding all that we hoped and prayed for - Him alone.
Last week a friend emailed to remind me to not romanticize my time in MN - to remember it for what it was: cold, dark and hard. But also to remember that in spite of it all, God was there working and leading and training. In spite of it all. Oh how I appreciated those wise words.
The sun has set. Darkness has fallen upon the mountains and I have only a few minutes left with my thoughts. And with my keyboard. No internet at home, doncha know. Snow is beginning to fall and I praise my God. Greater things are still to be done here.