I have shied away from the more personal posts here on FFNW because I wouldn’t say I fancy myself a prolific writer. Not that you have to be prolific to share personally, but I see the likes of Shauna Niequist, Jen Hatmaker and my pals Shelly Lorts and Abby Stalsbroten and well, I get a little intimidated if I can be candid.
However, life lately has required much vulnerability, humility and sharing my personal life with others. The actual life event isn’t uncommon…SO many people go through a move in their lifetime (or 12 moves), but quite honestly, I’ve never experienced one with so much emotional toil before.
We found out a while ago that Luke (my hubs) was losing his job as his company decided to shut down the Seattle office. His company went from 35 to 1. The “1” being ol’ Lukey. Side note: I once came to visit Luke in his office and he was by himself, lights off, doing push ups on the chairs. Pathetic? Cute? Yes.
We debated, prayed and cried over what steps to take next. We were given the gift of time to decide which steps to take, but sometimes having too much time to decide can be just as paralyzing as having a quick decision. We decided to head down the path of looking for jobs in both Seattle and the Portland area and prayed that God would make it very clear where we should end up. Seattle, being our “now” home and our precious little nest. All my students, many friends, our church, our lake, our Thai restaurant….they’re all in Seattle. Portland however, is where we would like to raise our future kids, it’s near our family and against what I initially had thought, it’s where God is calling us next. Well, not Portland technically, Vancouver, WA.
Luke was about to send resumes out to a bunch of companies to see what would stick on a Sunday afternoon in November. As he was going upstairs to send them off, the phone rang and God started to move quickly. He was offered a job as the Finance Manager for Crossroads Community Church in Vancouver. I won’t get into all the dets, but suffice it say, after much interviewing, praying (oh so much praying), wise counsel and you guessed it, more tears, Luke told me “if we don’t take this job and make this move, I will feel like I am deliberately disobeying God.” Well, alrighty then. Vancouver was a done deal.
Since that decision was made our lives have been an absolute WHIRLWIND of change, planning, problem-solving, difficult conversations, high and low emotions and so. much. packing. So, if you were wondering why the blogging has been a little more sporadic the past month or two, there ya go.
We got the job on a Friday, listed our house on Tuesday, sold it on the following Saturday, told my dance studios Wednesday and found a new house down south the next Sunday. UFF-DA.
I am writing all this 1) to explain why I haven’t been as active on the blog or at Faded Elegance 2) to use this as an opportunity for some reflection and exhale before we head into the new frontier and 3) to use this small (but I believe God will one day make it mighty!) platform to encourage my fellow creators, entrepreneurs, people allergic to change and home nest-makers that personal life and business (especially when you own your own) DO mix and God is faithful to carry you in the mix-up of it all!
This move and the speed of it has made me feel a plethora of emotions. I have felt extremely at a loss for what to do next, hectic and overwhelmed. I have felt deep humility at the outpouring of love and help from our families, friends, bosses, co-workers and my sweet and precious dance students. I have felt an overwhelming sense of gratitude that God’s promise of giving me a “peace that transcends all understanding” has IN FACT “guarded my heart and mind in Christ Jesus.” That promise has never really felt more true. And I have felt very displaced as we move from one place to the next. I had my rhythm going. I had Faded Elegance set up to succeed, I had gained momentum with Poshmark, I had choreographed all my dance pieces and was ready to clean them up, I had friendships that had just started to blossom and by golly, I loved our lake condo and I didn’t want to leave it.
In all of that ^ I came to the realization that I can relate to Joseph and Mary this Christmas in a whole new light. What displacement, what unsettling, what unknown they must have felt! I have never really felt that in my life before this season. God told them to go to Bethlehem, He didn’t tell them where they would stay, He didn’t have a cozy room ready for them in the Inn and He certainly didn’t tell them all the hoopla that would ensue after the birth (see Herod, parenting Jesus, His ministry, etc.) He told them to go. And they went. And God blessed them. Luke and I are already feeling and seeing His blessing and favor- in more ways than I can mention here. He told us to take this job and go, and so we went.
I write this in my “Bethlehem stable”…not quite settled in to our new home, not quite emotionally removed from our old home, Christmas day approaching fast and everything seems a little displaced. And yet, I feel peace. I see blessings upon blessings. I am grateful and thankful and at peace. To God be the glory for that!
I will keep everyone posted on what our new season will look like as soon as we know, haha. We have seen glimpses of our new life…we bought a small blueberry farm to live on, so blueberries are in that future we think. I just agreed to sell vintage from a new space downtown Vancouver (more on that later) and Luke has already started his new job and feels God’s hand of guidance on him in a huge way. So…that’s what we have for now, and for that, we are over-the-moon grateful.
Excited to share with you all the new-ness of what’s going to happen down here…glad we were called to stay in the PNW…Found and Forged NW still applies! Hooray! I may or may not have the opportunity to post again before Christmas, so if not…Merry Christmas to you and yours from FFNW! May God grant you His supporting arms, His all-encompassing peace and lots and lots of blueberries.