I’m writing this post from Colorado where we now live. Yep. We do.
And… I know. We moved last Fourth of July. Currently, all of our stuff is in storage and we are living with gracious family members while we get details worked out. Let me tell you friends- mountain air + minimized obligations + living out a suitcase. THIS is liberty. And of course, the new adventure and the free spirit in me feel satisfied. We like it. The palpable potential. So there you have it– me and myself are chocked-full of Independence Day metaphors. Too hard to resist.
Okay. Let me also say: it’s tricky to know how much to update via social media when there are many dear people I’d like to tell more personally. So, with hectic schedules and the perils of packing and missed phone calls and honestly just outright exhaustion I’ve committed to clicking “publish” this evening. And, I’d also like to begin to provide some real-life updates beyond snapshots of our adorable dog.
So, the scoop is: Luke’s degree program was transferred online and I really didn’t like my job at the VA.
I tried to like it. And then I quit trying to like it and tried to let it just be a “job.” And then, I realized that I was expending far too much of myself for things to just be job-like. So then, I worked really hard on fine-tuning boundaries, and felt uncomfortably grumpy. Historically, it’s been easy for me to wait out a real wonky arrangement because I think something wonderful is about to happen There I was, stomping into work, everyday, grumpy and heavy. Why on earth am I holding this cup? It feels like a JUG.
The things we all carry.
Sometimes we need to, most times we don’t. I don’t know that all carry-on items are as awkwardly heavy as mine felt but if we hold anything for long enough it makes us ache. Put. it. down!!!! I say. Alas, it is just that easy and that terrible and that impossible to put things down, isn’t it?
Speaking of which, the security loving parts of me wail when I think too hard about the pension and benefits that I’ll be parting with. I think I could comfortably retire when I am 49 if I waited out this gig. But, I know God is an abundant giver and to operate from the theology of scarcity that would keep me locked away at the VA, makes me feel like I’m in some kind of proverbial dungeon. To which I say, ” Mmmm No. I don’t think this is it.”
So, we press on, delighted and careful. Delighted that we now live in a state where we have abundant family members and dear friends, MOUNTAINS, radio stations worth listening to, -25% humidity and an overwhelming social consciousness that dogs are definitely not just dogs. I have found a job that we are both praying will make itself cool and clear and drink-worthy instead of lemony and sour wash-like. Our ministry supporters back in Texas that are walking hand in hand with us to make Luke’s education possible have been nothing short of wonderful. They are wonderful.
We are in the throes of raising support for yet another school year for Luke, and once again my security-loving self gets so chatty and negative. I try to shush her with Psalmist kind of prayers, but as always, peace descends when I’m not mustering up a darn thing but when the Spirit of God covers me. I am thankful for this gift– so that even my run-around “what-ifs” might take a breather and say, why yes, God is my shepherd and oh yes, God’s ways are good. And oh yes, in God’s graciousness, I will be reminded once again, tomorrow, that God is my shepherd. Friends: this is a most authentic and necessary lullaby.
So, we are also pressing on with care. Though I gladly farewelled my job, we were not ready to leave our friends in Wimore behind. Of course, you are never ready to leave good friends behind, but the swiftness of it all, made the ache of leaving a bit of a bigger thing to carry than anticipated. It’s a bittersweet cup that we gladly carry because it’s full of prayers and kindness and until we are reunited, this memory cup is what we have. And of course, every once in a while, when we take a good loooong sip, we will pause and cry and think, “Oh, how I miss that sweet sleepy seminary town full of sweet, life-giving people.” And then somehow, someway, the cup will be filled up again.
And as for my Luke, I am ever-grateful that he is the one who is with me in this. The past week has been a journ-ey– as you might imagine. I vanned (i.e. drove our rather large van) while Luke drove a 26 foot semi-truck trailing the red car behind. Camping in the van in not so certain places– again, another humid-sticky, feat. And loading that long, hot yellow Penske full of our stuff– horrible, horrible tetris like feat. Yet, we did it. And gosh, does one have to dig deep to be patient and helpful and not totally 13 year old tantrum-ish. It’s in times like this that I am especially thankful for the covenant we have promised each other. I could feel myself leaning into it thinking– okay, Luke, I do. And sometimes to keep “I-doing” whether its waking up to truck full of boxes or riding out the throes of total uncertainty is hard to do with patience and grace. But, I have been given a man who is also committed to doing what it takes to make my life a little sweeter, a little less burdensome and he is full of kindness and ease. The give and take of this kind of partnership is sacred and lovely even when it’s not enchanting.
So. There are fireworks tonight. I love fireworks. We will watch them. And, when we watch them I will probably think in poems and thank-you prayers like I always do when perfect and nostalgic things happen. So, thank you God, for all the bright, beautiful, wise, wonderful things you give us. And as thankful as I am, help me be just as faithful. That’s where the doing happens. The sweet, sweaty, moving-day dig-deep kind faithfulness. And you know what? Colorado clifty mountains or Kentucky green valleys–God gives us doings that need to be done. That’s the beauty of the Kingdom of God.