Friday, June 1, 2012

The Move

It wasn’t my dream.  It wasn’t my desire.  There were sound reasons not to do it.  Yet, one Sunday morning before church began, I felt the conviction of the Holy Spirit.   

            “You are not allowing God to answer your prayers.  You pray for your husband to be the leader of your home, but you want to control his leadership.” 

I knew immediately why the Lord was rebuking me. My husband wanted a job transfer to the Carolinas.  I had resisted and refused the open doors God gave him, preferring my own plans.  I repented and within three months, we were setting up a home in the Carolinas--600 miles away from family and friends of a lifetime.  For me, it became a journey to the Promised Land because God uses obedience to transform lives.  He uses it to work in us and through us making all of life a mission field when we go forth in obedience to Him.

Throughout the heartache of saying good-bye and the challenges of selling a home in one state and buying in another, God put one special song in my heart:

“Freely, freely, you have received. 
Freely, freely give. 
Go in my name
and because you believe,
others will know that I live.”

I liked the ‘Freely Give’ part of the song…the ’Freely Receive’ part was an affront to my do-it-yourself nature. I preferred to keep a tight control on the details of life to limit needs to those “I” could manage.   Raised by parents who grew up in the depression, the ethic of hard work surges through every fiber of my being.  It is a good value; hard work pleases the Lord and is necessary.  Work, though, is limited to the earthly realm.  The work of the Lord has no such limits.  God used the move to teach me about the glories of receiving His will! 

Every journey to the Promised Land -- to the land where Christ rules and reigns -- demands faith in the goodness and power of God.  God is willing and able to meet earthly needs with divine precision.  Selling a home in the midst of a New York winter is about as ideal as planning a road trip through the mountains in late January.  Our ‘go’ included such lovely timing!  In God’s inimitable way, our home sold within weeks at a higher price than we listed it.  Our moving day was sunny and the roads were dry for the entire twelve hours!  We found and purchased a home in a quaint, quiet country town for less than our NY home sale price.  God provided exactly the people we needed to help us adjust:  a caring realtor who planned a birthday party for our teen the week we arrived, a contractor that took care of necessary repairs and a Christian family to love us.  God did it all with exquisite timing and attention to needs we could not anticipate and desires we could not hope to fill! 

As God provided blessings I could not produce through any amount of hard work, I began to understand receiving.  Giving is contingent on receiving.  Without an open-ness to the magnificence of God, all we can give is ourselves. The sorrow of saying good-bye to loved ones is an on-going grief.  Yet it is a grief with glorious results.  The common, eternal need we all share is receiving the knowledge that Jesus is alive!  Living life with confidence that God can and will provide even more than we need brings the presence of God into a hurting world.  Go in my name…” is a concept usually tied to missionary service, but it should not be so.  Each life is lived on the mission field. Obedient faith reveals God’s goodness and power.  My prayer is that our story will inspire you to trust Him more, to truly receive HIM--to go in His name and show others, He is alive!


  1. Billie Jo, what a testimony! Praise God! I'm sure you know how hard it is to sell a home these days. I definitely see God moving all the pieces on this chess board. How does your husband like his new job?

  2. 'okay' is the best answer. But the practical things we discussed before committing have been what we expected: he has a better schedule (healthier), the lifestyle overall is more active and outdoor oriented. He seems more peaceful and is growing spiritually. The kids have good opportunities to pursue their interests. God has been so faithful and revealed Himself in so many ways.