It’s really true…we’re moving to New Zealand…in 7 weeks!
It can be a long story or a short story, and neither adequately detail just what lead us to this decision. So here’s a version that’s somewhere in between. It starts with this:
“The most important thing to discern when having discernment is knowing when to act on it and when to not.”
It wasn’t Robert Frost that said that, or MLK, or some wise guy from the bible.
It was just a guy I know at work who is known for coming up with momentary philosophical musings. Most of his proverbs hang out in left field in the company of one another and a few chuckles from bystanders. But this one stuck with me. And it was timely advice.
For awhile now, 8 or 9 months or so, I’ve been telling a few people (the ones in my life who stick around long enough to hear me rant on about random things) that I feel like I’m about to have to make a major life-changing decision. Like God was brewing some big crossroad in my life. And I could feel it approaching like a bad cold. Even though I didn’t yet have a clear picture of what it was, I could feel that it was big and would alter the course of the rest of my life. It would mean making some major decisions, the kind there’s no looking back on once they are made.
Let’s be clear, nothing about this was a comforting feeling. In fact, I was absolutely dreading it happening before I even really knew if it was real. Clearly, this was not news I shared with many since it exposes the crazy person I really am.
Rewind about two months earlier… December 2010…this same time last year. Some friends of ours were moving to Oz (or more accurately, Aus). They were newly married, like us, actually tied the knot the day before us just a few months back. They were setting out on an adventure that I preferred to think of as purely romantic, but I knew it was much more than that. It was a professional and personal step, too. I envied them but secretly thought they were insane. Who moves half way around the world anymore?! Can’t you just make Facebook friends with someone there then Skype them for fun on the weekends?!
I like to think I’m one of those really cool people that can just pick up my few things and move anywhere in the world on a moment’s notice, the note on which we’ve wished many of our friends adieu. But the truth is…I’m totally not like that. I want to be, but I like my things too much. I like my pots and pans and bookcases and TV’s and fake Christmas tree, even if it only comes out once a year. I like my lovely wedding dishes and Martha Stewart bake wear. I like my couch and our big fluffy king-sized bed. I like spending the weekends with my dog and my husband on mini bike cruises downtown our suburban neighborhood. I like calling my mom every day on my way home to work. And I rather enjoy seeing my family two or three times a week, at the very least on Sunday’s at the Spaghetti Factory for our weekend ritual.
Thank God that sort of decision wasn’t in my cards…
In the Spring time I had the chance to be involved in a team presentation to marketing leaders from some of the major support offices for the World Vision international partnership. Among them was the director of engagement at World Vision New Zealand. He fancied some interest in my work with the World Vision Blog, and I’m drawn to folks with accents (and I could talk WV Blog all day long), so we struck up a conversation and connected on Twitter.
The short of it from there on out was that a series of conversations, a few interviews, and two sleepless nights later…we made the decision to “take a leap of faith”, as my dear friend Karen has said recently in her own blog announcement. Borrowing from her wisdom and sharing in her feelings, I like what she has said, because it’s true for us, too: “There is no doubt that God has been preparing us for this next adventure for a long time.”
We’re acting on the discernment that’s been tugging on our spirits since this last New Year, and, in hindsight, most of our lives.
So we’re packing up house, actually before the end of this month, and planning our move to the land down under in the very beginning of February…just after we dance party on the beach in celebration of the R & K wedding. And I’ll leave my favorite pots and pans and craft projects in boxes in my sister’s spare bedroom. And my dog with my mom. And my auntie bliss with my nephews.
But I’ve never been more sure or excited about any decision in my whole life (unless you count marrying my best friend). Hours of prayers in the last year and millions of desires to be exactly where God would have us have met their match in this move. We’re ready to take the leap of faith, hand-in-hand, feet first.
On an ending note….
I think age teaches you funny lessons. (Sometimes God teaches you lessons at the most inconvenient times, but ‘age’ lessons are always much more timely with their delivery.) Most recently, age has taught me how much I need consistent change in my life. Yeah, I’m totally one of those people that gets bored with the same thing over and over again. Just the thought of spending years of my life not seeking and living what’s best for me in the moment makes me cringe.
But I never knew that about myself until these last few weeks because until this point in my life, change always just happened — it was part of the natural milestones of life. You spend years at school, you graduate school, you go to college, you get a job, you get married. But after that, change in your life is up to you. There’s no natural phenomenon for the way things occur after that. You really do have to create your future, otherwise, I fear you fall into one you don’t want.
So thanks, age, for teaching me such a valuable thing about myself.
And I would be with major remorse if I didn’t publicly thank every single person who’s truly helped me grow and learn in my job and in my life in the last three years. I could never be where I am now without your incredibly selfless support and advice, words and blogs of wisdom, and unfiltered, unrehearsed honest conversations. You’ll know who you are because I’ll be sure to tell you myself.
So like my last friend to move to the land down under wrote on his moving announcement post…
Cheers to the future, mate 🙂
“In the end, we step into the future as an act of faith & hope its still there when we arrive.”
Much, much more to come about our move to NZ. So appreciate your prayers as we dot our i’s on the paperwork and double tape our boxes.
Love always, lindsey and colin.