September 30, 1978. It was the day I married the love of my life. I understood Ruth 1:16 very clearly: “Wherever you go, I will go; wherever you live, I will live.” This verse was a natural choice for our wedding theme, because we would be moving away from the place we grew up, Milwaukee. My hub had taken a job in Chicago. I never imagined moving away. Ever. I also knew that chances were we would not live in Illinois forever. In fact, in 3 years we moved to Atlanta. A year after that we relocated to Houston, and in another 3 years we landed in Omaha.
We bought a house where the kids could walk to school. I thought that was that. The company was headquartered in Omaha; chances were slim that we would transfer anywhere else. As the kids got older, we decided to buy several acres in the outlying then-small-town of Gretna. I was done moving. The kids grew up, finished school, and went off to college. Eventually everyone graduated and moved out of the house. We were finally empty nesters. Now, I thought, I am set. No more moving. No more “going where you’re going.” I want to have
something a lot to say about the decision of where we go next.
Yeah, I guess I didn’t factor in the little detail of husband thinking one thing and me not really thinking much of anything as far as future plans were concerned. He is looking forward to taking early retirement; I’m not really ready to think about the next step. He wants to have something to do in his retirement; I’m not ready to retire. His ‘something to do’ means moving to a farm and becoming a farmer. “A what?!?” I say. “Growing alfalfa.” “Been there, done that; too old for that activity, thank you very much.” I grew up helping haul bales of hay. No more.
So, in a year or so, we’ll be moving to Denton, Nebraska where we will become farmers. Well, at least one of us will become a farmer. Me? I will live happily on a farm, feeding the birds, walking around the 20 acres, and NOT baling hay.
Seems to me like it would have been so much easier to be on the same page (although I didn’t even know what book I was reading!). I prayed for that. God answered that prayer by putting me on the page my husband was on. “Where you go, I’ll go…” Why did I ever think that I was over that? Selfish? Probably. Scared? For sure. Not wanting to move? Definitely. But I’ve been given another great opportunity to trust God–and I know He is faithful.
I’ll admit, I’m about 90% sold on this venture. But I’ve decided that’s a good thing, because it means I need to continue to trust my Father with all of the details: from building barns to building a house; from finding a new church home to making new friends. O Lord, help me to change my thinking from “where you go, I’ll go” to “I’ll go where You send me.”
OH MY GOODNESS! I just now realized as I wrote that last line that my favorite verse, Isaiah 6:8, “Here am I, send me, send me,” means more than just “send me on the mission field.” It means, “Send me, Lord, to wherever you would have me go. Not just once or twice a year to Canada, or Russia, or wherever, but send me every day to where You would have me go!”
How did I not see that this is Your plan, not mine? Lord, thank you for Your forgiveness and for Your gentle reminder that You have sent Your Son to cover all of my sins. Oh, thank you, Father for Your undeserved grace in my life!
Honey, where you go, I’ll go. We’ll go together, just as we said almost 35 years ago. Love you!
…and you, too, my beautiful friends!