My husband and I had always thought that someday God would move us from our home, but we never thought it would be very far. Probably still in Rhode Island. It was later that summer in our searching that the Lord began to draw us towards New York, and Chatham is the area that we began to believe would be our ultimate destination.
The next step God showed us – was my husband closing his business –which He instructed us to do in May’ 2015. In June, God spoke and said – Genesis 12:1 – “Go to the land I will show you”. Prepare to sell your home. My husband spent the next several months fixing up our home and we finally put our house on the market in November, selling the following May. On June 24th of 2016, we closed on our home and our U-Haul trucks set out for Canaan, NY (of all places lol – NY, our promised land)! My husband and I were joined by our two adult sons. As exciting as it was, unfortunately we had to leave our daughter, son-in-law, and 4 small grandchildren behind. That was not easy since my 4th grandchild was born the week before we left.
A friend of ours had a word for us from Numbers 9:15-23. We had no clue of what this really meant as we went forward… but we were soon to find out!
The house we rented in Canaan had been for sale for a while but with no activity. We were the second family whom the house had been rented to. The very first morning there, the Lord spoke to me in prayer and said “Don’t get comfortable here”. Surely I did not hear that correctly… A few days later, the real estate agent called apologizing, telling us that since the owner chose to rent to us, the phone has been ringing off the hook with potential buyers… So we went from 6 months of leaving our house every time it had to be shown – to starting all over again. But that was ok, we knew only God could take this home away from us. So we never really unpacked everything. Within 2 months the house was sold but the real estate agent told us not to worry. The final sale was contingent upon the buyer selling their house which was apparently very, very small. But no surprises, of course their house sold in one day!
Over time we felt that at some point, I would also be leaving my job as well. A couple weeks before we left Canaan, God prompted me to leave. I had been there for over 30 years. God was clearly showing us that as we must be obedient, and that our obedience is the key that unlocks the next step of our journey. Each step came with much prayer, time in the word and a peace that God would give to both my husband and myself.
This time we could not even find a house in NY that met our needs. God very strangely opened a door at the very last minute, back over the border in Monterey MA, in the Berkshires. (I thought I was calling one place, but somehow, I was calling another… and the owner gave us the ok in one day with no credit checks, etc. and gave us a 30 day out clause, as we explained we were still looking to buy a home.
“God was clearly showing us that as we must be obedient, and that our obedience is the key that unlocks the next step of our journey.”
But we knew that MA was not our home – we belonged in NY! “God, what are you doing?” Here again, we never fully unpacked, never put any pictures on the wall…. We were always thankful for a warm, safe place to live. But on the other hand, the last “home” we really had was back in Johnston RI. We lived there for an entire year believing that God would move us to Chatham at any time. As the year progressed, we had many very discouraging days……
I call this year in Monterey a period of separation, a time that we felt cut off from everything. It was a very lonely time as well. This was not at all what we expected when we set out on this journey! But is was during this time that our walk with the Lord went deeper, much deeper-though we had for a long time given God the first fruits of our morning. Now we had nothing else to do lol! We began to spend a couple hours each morning studying the Word, discussing, praying – and I began to journal. Many times we would say – “are we crazy?”. We spent morning after morning recounting the signs that brought us thus far. What we felt God had promised looked impossible, but on the other hand…. when we looked back we felt sure we had not made a mistake! So we continued trying to move forward and believe. Some mornings we sang and rejoiced in faith. Other mornings we felt like we could barely move – depression was heavy upon us.
After spending a year in Monterey, God finally moved us back to NY – now we were at least getting closer to what we believe will be our final home one day. For the second Thanksgiving in a row, our family spent the day moving. The next step – Stuyvesant Falls, NY.
And here we are, planted – but not. Its hard to truly feel settled or at home here as my husband and I know that at some point we will be moving again. Though we have no idea when. And it is so hard, as we have learned, to comprehend God’s timing. It is truly never what we think it will be…….
We had no clue when we read Numbers 9:15 how much it would mirror our life.
As hard as this has been, God has done a truly great thing – He took us deeper in him! We have a love and dependence on the Word that we never knew before. We went from a hectic life with family, grandchildren, job, our business, church – to a life really stripped away of everything we knew. God has given me a new revelation regarding where you truly learn to worship – it’s not always on the mountaintop – but I learned on my knees, in what has sometimes felt like the valley of the shadow of death for me. If I had it to do all over again – I would not change a thing, even though we are still waiting…….