We’re back! It’s amazing what can happen in 12 days.
We went to Vienna, drove through Hungary (and waved at Budapest), stayed in Serbia, and left from (North) Macedonia.
If you like visuals, there’s a blurry photo recap on Facebook, or you can watch it role out in real time on my Instagram Stories Archive. I need a photographer/documentarian to follow me around, though, because taking pictures and recording video is not my forte. You’ve been warned. lol
So, what now?
The night before we left, Laki (our friend and Lifegate pastor) asked me what was on my heart. Immediately, an image came to mind.
If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you know how interconnected our family is with the Balkan area. In 2016, I was journaling and wrote down, “Your family will be instrumental in helping to establish a Lifegate in the Balkans.” This is a word we’ve been holding with open hands for years now, taking steps through each door as they open. (You can find more about our travels on my “Our Global Journeys!” page.)
I told Laki, it has felt like a long boulevard lined with stoplights. We’ve had one or two green lights followed by a bunch of red lights. So, we’d travel through the green light and then stop and wait for the next light to turn green. Eventually it would, so we’d progress and then stop. Progress and then stop. (I hate driving down streets like this, by the way. Give me the open road all day long!)
On this trip specifically, it felt like pieces of the puzzle that were previously missing somehow dropped into place. I looked down the road, and it was all green lights ahead.
That’s the sum total of our trip. 🙂
We’ve been alluding to it for a really long time, and I’m finally ready to write it down.
(We haven’t even fully processed this with our extended family, but I doubt they’ll be surprised.) It’s just that I feel like if I keep it inside, it’ll stay as long as I let it.
So here goes…
We’re moving to the Balkans, sometime in the next 12 to 24 months. For real.
The only real deciding factors are the kids. Isaac is a Junior in High School this year, which makes stewarding his heart through this transition really important to us. But we’re trusting and praying that the Lord has included them in this ministry and will set their hearts at ease with whatever plan He shows us.
Here’s my invitation to everyone – come alongside us as our lives are turned upside down in all the best ways.
You don’t have to give us money. (Though we will be eventually inviting partners who are legitimately excited to contribute, plus God is doing a new thing!) You don’t even have to commit to praying for us. (Though prayers are always welcome!)
We just want to share with you all the very messy and muddled, scary and exhilarating, perspective-changing and life-transforming process of stepping out onto the waves. We want to do this in community.
Also, it’s going to be a trip – in every sense of that word. lol
Things we are considering:
1. Belongings. Everything that comes into this house will soon have to go. This changes how we look at “things,” and it’s a mental shift that the Lord’s been working on in me for a while. And I don’t get to be stubborn anymore.
2. Schooling. We will have to homeschool overseas, at least to start. We are seriously considering transitioning Anorah at semester so that I can figure this out with our support system here. Praying hard about what to do with Isaac, because traditional school has never fit him well, but he craves time with his friends.
3. Our House in Bennington. Do we sell or rent? Either way, it’s going to need a real good amount of work. Poor thing has two musician/artist – types for caretakers. No, I don’t know how to repair a basket ball-sized hole in drywall.
4. Relationships. Ugh this one is so hard and complex. Not just leaving our friends and local community, but our family relationships on all sides. We’re already having conversations about trying to get to Florida “one last time,” which suuuuucks to think about. Hate it.
5. Jesus. Thank God for His constant presence and grace. Scripture is taking on new light, songs we sing have new meaning. This is faith in action, and it’s forcing us both to take our discipleship to a new level. Comfort was never part of God’s equation and I don’t like that. Comfort has been such a nice friend to me.
The theme song of this season is “This is a Move.” Yes Lord. In our lives, in our communities, in our nation, in our world, we need a move and you are moving. And we are moving. lol
We love you all and we thank you for your continued encouragement and prayers and friendship. We are happy to carry your hearts with us into the nations. Until then, grab some popcorn, cuz this is going to be a LONG and CRAZY montage. 😉