FAQ: When Are You Leaving?
I’ve heard this several times in Allendale over the past two months: “I thought you were gone already.”
I guess this reaction is a combination of us:
- communicating in waaayyyy back in October that we would be moving,
- being out-of-town for almost half of December, (including travelling almost 2000 miles in 30 days), and
- not having many programs going on in the community during these cold winter months (besides Robotics and the upcoming spring break camp)
I’d like to think that people are pleasantly surprised to find out that we are still in Allendale, instead of them thinking, “I was hoping you’d be gone already.”
(I’m sure there are people in both camps, and that’s fine.)
(On a side note: Are you frustrated that we seem to have so few answers to these questions? Trust me. It irks no one more than yours truly, who is energized by writing down 3-, 6-, & 12-month goals. And this is to say nothing of making my daily to-do list, and then the thrill making these goals and tasks come to fruition. Please . . . just hang with me.)
Summer, Summer, Summertime
In 2013, Joanna and I had lots of conversations about our moving from Allendale — with God, with ourselves, and with mentors and friends. We considered moving at the end of 2013 (or even at the end of 2014), but we concluded that the end of the school year would be ideal.
Part of this reason is for our own children, so that we could settle somewhere before a new school year. However, since we homeschool our children, we have great flexibility in transitioning in the middle of a school year, much like how we were able to move to Allendale in the spring of 2011, before the end of the school year. It was An Unexpected Benefit of Homeschooling.
Another big reason to move during the summer would be for the sake of the relationships and ministries that we have in Allendale. Since we have worked with children so much, we believe that a summer transition would be easier on us and on the students of Allendale. Summer is a natural break.
That being said, we have set a target of moving in June. But we also are ok with that time-frame being sooner or later by a month or two, as we work to discern what God has for us.
And of course, if we decide to move back to Greenville, some of the timing may depend on how long our tenants will need to be there. (contract, sh-montract — we’re thankful that we’ve had great friends renting our house!).
Trusting God in Our Plans
To be honest, I know that my passive side could easily take over, and that I could let this transition drag on and on and on. And on.
My lazy and passive flesh wants to think, “We could wait until the neon sign from God arrives. We’ll just stay here in Allendale for as long as need to. People will keep sending support money – I hope – and we’ll just stay here in the comfort of what we know.”
The planner in me (remember my daily, quarterly, & yearly goals?) would love to analyze my options forever. I would love to talk, and study, and plan, and talk some more. And plan. And I guess I should pray, too.
But I also know that I need to accept responsibility, and GO DO SOMETHING. Solomon, the wisest man who ever lived, knew that he could endlessly study and write (Ecclesiastes 12:12). But he concluded that the most important thing is merely to honor and obey God (verse 13).
So, I will actively move forward to finding a new job. I will work to having our family moved in June. By rejecting passivity, I will honor God in my family and my ministry.
Could God change our plans? Absolutely. And we’re fine with that. But I’m not going to dig my heels in and say, “I’m only moving if God makes me!” (HT: Jon Acuff)
Three years ago, God “changed our plans” by leading us to Allendale. And we’re so glad that He did. We followed Him in faith in our move here. And just as He has blessed us, we trust that He will bless us in whatever, wherever, and whenever He has for us.
Where You Come In
What can you do over the next few months? Three things:
- FAQ: How Long Will You Need Financial Support?
- FAQ: Where Are You Going Next?
- FAQ: What Will You Do Next?
- FAQ: Why Are You Leaving Allendale? — Part 1 and Part 2
- FAQ: How Does Grace Church’s Relationship With Allendale Change When You Leave?
- FAQ: What Will Be the Impact When You Leave Allendale?
**image courtesy of Library of Congress via flickr