I was driving home last night, listening to the radio, which was set to Joe's favorite Air 1. Thelma Wells came on for a Life Change Moment. I have grown to love Thelma through hearing her speak at Women of Faith events over the years and reading her devotionals. You can hear some of her story here or visit her website here. There's something so soothing about her voice and I love to hear her read God's Word. On the radio moment, she talked about peace and read John 14:27 from the New Living Translation.
I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don't be troubled or afraid.
We are packing up our house this week-- again. We just moved here less than six months ago. It was heart-wrenching to leave our former home (family, church, friends, area), but we knew that God was with us and I was confident that He would carry us through the transition. He far exceeded my hopes in every way. He came before us, provided people to help us unload our uhaul when we first got here, brought us closer as a family, and led us to a new church family that has become very dear to us. I thought that after we settled in here, I'd just have some really sweet alone times with God and enjoy my family in this new area. I have done those things, but what I never expected was to fall in love with so many new people so quickly.
Things did not go the way we had expected or hoped with Joe's job, and he was let go about two weeks before Christmas. Since then we have been praying and seeking God to guide us for our next step. Joe has really stepped up in being the spiritual leader in our home and I have so much respect and appreciation for how he has handled the situation. It would be natural and understandable to freak out, be angry, maybe even depressed. But Joe has stood his ground and sought after God and rested in His perfect peace. We really haven't been anxious about it all... just trusting God to lead us and knowing that He has a plan. We really can't question why He would move us this far only to bring us back again. We can see His handiwork in the whole thing, and I'm sure there's much more that we'll look back on later and realize.
One week from today (if all goes according to plan), we will be on our way again, driving across several states, back to California. We don't have a place of our own to live yet (but my very gracious sister and her family are generously making room for us). Joe has two temporary guest artist spots in shops in Monterey and the East Bay for the month of February, and then a more permanent position in San Francisco starting in March (that one is 99% a sure thing at this point.. he should know later this week... please pray with us about that one).
Through it all, we've been so thankful for God's peace. Peace of mind and heart, like the verse above says. When you're under the shadow of His wings, it really doesn't matter if the world around you is chaotic. He has us covered and He'll lead us, keeping us close through it all.