This was the mantra I kept repeating to myself while walking aimlessly through Wal-Mart three weeks ago. After our car broke down. Which happened after our microwave expoloded. Which happened after our sub-leaser for the summer backed out. Which happened after our hard-drive crashed and we. lost. everything. (everyone always says to back it up but my husband and I, who are most definately NOT tech-saavy, had no clue how to do that) All of this happened right in the midst of deciding to uproot and move to VERY northern Minnesota, where I will finish college long distance, and we will take a wonderful, exciting, God-led, very adventurous (in the sense that it is not at all what we had planned) ministry opportunity with a yet-to-be-decided upon job description that is half salary and half support based. We currently are living on savings and will be through the summer (which means no proof of income to buy a new car). This week is finals week and family is coming up for Caleb’s graduation Saturday (please don’t judge our warzone of an apartment!). We leave Sunday for Grand Marais in order to do wilderness first aid, we come back during the night Thrusday so I can make a friend’s wedding cake on Saturday, and then we drive back up to the Porcupine Mountains in Michigan on Sunday to immediately embark on a 10-day wilderness trip. Not to mention I just got diagnosed with Celiac Disease (gluten allergy) and this baker must learn a new way to bake. Not to mention the fact that I also had my hormone levels tested, and my body DOESN’T PRODUCE cortisol – the hormone that REGULATES STRESS – after 11:00 in the morning. Phew. This is what living on a prayer looks like, I think.
I needed to write all of that down. It was therapeutic. But now, I need to tell you that I am learning so much about faith, about trust, and about joy. Never before have I been able, in the midst of what felt to me like overwhelming stress (and believe you me, it doesn’t take much for me to get overwhelmed) to be so sure that, when we come out on the other side, which we will, we will be stronger and our sense of joy more profound. I cannot tell you how excited I am to be in the midst of something bigger than myself. God has shown us a path to follow, and we want to be nowhere else but on that path. We are moving to Grand Marais, MN to use wilderness ministry and the outdoor-education model through a non-profit called Coldwater in conjuction with youth ministry at a church called Grand Marais Evangelical Free. It’s a beautiful partnership of church and non-profit that we feel blessed to be apart of. Thank you, Lord, for trials, for we would not be who we are without them.