Just as everything in our home has started to feel settled, God is shaking things up. We've lived here almost five years (the longest we've lived somewhere since we've been married). Lidiyanna is home with us and things feel comfortable and safe. I like my neighborhood, my church, my friends, and my life. Yet, God is leading us to another place.
On Valentine's Day, Tim came home and told me Nissan had made a rather nice offer for him to take a position in Toronto, Canada. The good news...it would only be two years, and it would mean a promotion. The bad news...we would have to leave our friends and family and move to a place I've never been.
At first, I was not happy about the idea. Tim had mentioned the possibility several weeks before and I adamantly told him I did not want to talk about it. Every time he brought it up, I told him I was not talking about it, and on Valentine's night, I really did not want to talk about it. So, I told Tim I would pray about it, and Nissan would have to wait a few more days to have an answer.
Isn't it interesting how God works? Looking back, I can see how God's hand had been preparing my heart for this move. Last fall, there was a possibility that Nissan would send us to LA for a year. I think God used that to open my mind to a short-term assignment. The weekend before Valentine's, Tim and I participated in a marriage conference at our church. We talked about Tim's leadership in our home and about how I love how adventuresome he is. He has taken me on journeys I would have never done alone, and it seems that he's about to lead me on another one. God used that marriage conference to get my attitude in our marriage ready to follow.
So, here we are about to move again. This time it's not as hard. It's not permanent. The time in Toronto has a time frame, and we will be returning to our home here in Tennessee in two years. I keep thinking, "I can do it for two years, right?"
A good thing is we don't have to sell our house. There's a small chance we might, or we could rent it while we are gone. Nissan will help to provide a service to manage it for us. Tim and I are traveling to Toronto this weekend to find a house to rent and to look at schools. We will all be moving as a family at the end of May after Graham finishes Kindergarten.
So many unknowns swirl around in our heads during this time. Tim's to-do list is a mile long, and I feel concerned about finding a good school, church, and new friends. Last Sunday, we sang a beautiful hymn that was written in 1752. The words encouraged and soothed my anxious heart. I know the next two years will have new experiences and adventures that will be fun and exciting. I also know we will have lonely times that God will use to draw us closer to Himself. As He always has in our lives, He will continue to be faithful.
Be still, my soul! the Lord is on thy side; Bear patiently the cross of grief or pain; Leave to thy God to order and provide; In every change He faithful will remain. Be still, my soul! thy best, thy heavenly Friend. Through thorny ways leads to a joyful end.
Be still, my soul! thy God doth undertake To guide the future as He has the past. Thy hope, thy confidence, let nothing shake; All now mysterious shall be bright at last. Be still, my soul! the waves and winds still know His voice who ruled them while He dwelt below.
Be still, my soul! the hour is hastening on When we shall be forever with the Lord, When disappointment, grief, and fear are gone, Sorrow forgot, love's purest joys restored. Be still, my soul! when change and tears are past, All safe and blessed we shall meet at last.
On Sunday, my little girl turned one. What a sweet and special blessing she has been to our family over the past year! She's only been home with us for five months, but it seems like she's always been a part of our family.
She's crawling and cruising and getting very close to walking. She's eating more table food and doing great with a sippy cup now. She continues to be Little Miss Social with her charismatic personality and irresistible charm.
We had a little family celebration for her over the weekend. She devoured her cupcake, and I think she's going to share our love of sweets.
Several times, throughout the weekend, I thought about her family in Ethiopia. I continue to grieve for the loss they have experienced, and I was especially mindful of it on her birthday.
I continue to be amazed at the love her brothers have for her. The other day Wesley was talking about how he prayed for her when she was in Ethiopia. Graham said he wanted to take her to his boys' night out at school where you are to bring your "favorite" girl. They both possess a very protective and fierce love for her.
I continue to be humbled and in awe of the gift God has given us in Lidiyanna. A few Sundays ago, we dedicated her to the Lord in our church. The first picture in this post is from that morning.