Thursday, August 26, 2010

O Canada!

About 45 years ago my Dad answered an ad in an academic publication and applied for a job as head librarian of a Christian college in Oklahoma. He got the position and the resulting move took our family several states away from relatives and friends and landed us in a new place that we knew very little about. Looking back at it now, I can appreciate what a huge risk it was for my parents to make this decision. With my 20/20 hindsight, now I can see how this move positively influenced our family's spiritual beliefs, and put me in a place where I could develop into the young woman God created me to be and eventually meet my husband. It was a launching pad for my destiny!

At the time of this move I was only 5 years old and all I knew was that we were moving away from my grandma, but we got to get a newer, bigger house. I couldn't understand at that young age that God wasn't just expanding our living space, He was expanding our lives.

I've thought of this situation several times in the last year as my own family has travelled a similar path. We recently made a huge move from the US to Canada. Two years ago I would have thought a transition like this would be insane, but God's voice and our circumstances made us more and more willing to take the leap.

So here we are, transplanted from the lush Willamette Valley of Oregon to the prairie of Saskatchewan, Canada. I would be lying if I said that the move has been easy. It has challenged every fiber of my being--but God has never left me through a minute of the process.

When my husband came to interview for his job in Saskatchewan, I was taken aback by how absolutely FLAT the terrain is. A person can go for miles and miles and miles and not meet one bend in the road. I laughed when I thought of the Bible verse that says "You have set me in a large place." As time has passed, the beauty of the prairie with it's amazing sunsets and wide open sky has begun to sink into me. I am becoming more and more aware that God has been the chief instigator of this transition.

The house number that our family is renting is 118. Initially, I thought nothing of it, except to try to commit it to memory for postal purposes. However, On our trip to move our family up to Canada, our hotel room number was also 118. I laughed at the coincidence and thought God was just having mercy on my overwhelmed mind by giving me a room number that I could remember. The next morning, however, I felt compelled to flip to Psalm 118. My eyes fell to verse 5: "From my distress I called upon the Lord; The Lord answered me and SET ME IN A LARGE PLACE!" I felt so strongly that God's Spirit was affirming to me that this large place was to be our address; the place we lived. And I rest assured from prior experience that He's not just expanding our living space--He's expanding our lives!

So as I continue to physically and mentally unpack things from this move I rest in the thought that God holds all our details in the palm of His hand. I thank God for His faithfulness to us that brought us through the path we traveled the last 2 years, and I look at the long straight road ahead of us that leads toward our future and I smile.