We’re moving house…again and I’ve been checking through my old journals to see what the Lord taught me in the past about this familiar exercise! This will be our 23rd move in the 56 years of our marriage. I’ve gleaned something new in every one. Many times I’ve had to relearn a lesson; sometimes there has been more than one!
I found this entry in my Journal. It was written 24 years ago this month.
Sometimes it seems so pointless, all this moving. I get so tired and feel as if we’re not important enough to have a settled home.
As I wrote those words in my first Journal, I was reminded of what the Lord had said to me a few days before: Embrace the future with joy! A sermon that week also spoke to me about not hanging onto the past. It’s not easy for a person like me; I always like to put my roots down deep. But then I have to turn from the friends I’ve made and look ahead to new experiences and challenges. I feel disloyal, bare-rooted and unstable while I’m still learning about embracing the future with joy.
I’ve checked the time-frame of the move that year and now I remember that many of the new experiences were good. There was a great new church family while the ‘old’ one was still close. We had a few nice new neighbours to meet and believe it or not, a future son-in-law in the offing! Very nice!
When I was re-reading that Journal entry last month, I also noticed the words that God spoke to me then: You can run to the shelter of my being when you feel threatened. Threatened? I hadn’t thought of it that way, but moving house can be threatening for me… and destabilising. I often experience it as a time of dashed hopes, so much so, that I don’t dare to hope too strongly. But I was comforted yet again as I read God’s promise of refuge; his assurance of a safe anchorage.
Six years ago, I wrote a book for my family to record our lives in all the homes we’d made over the years. I thought this home would be our last, but here we go again!
Soon we’ll have a new one with a much smaller garden, less shed-space and a ‘minuscule’ vegie patch. Our ‘old’ one will be occupied by strangers. We’ll go to a different church and shop in an unfamiliar supermarket. Will they know me as well as the last people did?
This all made me think about Jesus’ move to earth from heaven. My changes are nothing compared with his, yet he had amazing joy about the prospect of being closer to us! What a Saviour!
Now I’m feeling God’s excitement! Surely he’ll use all these potential experiences for good. In my heart I know there’ll be fresh lessons to learn, deeper water to swim in and new friends to make. I’m sensing that God has choreographed some wonderful dances to share with me!