I found myself on this Thankful Thursday reminded of when Winters and I were transferred to Nebraska with his company in 2000. I pray this Thankful Thursday will encourage and bless you on your own journey.
To say it was a difficult move would be an understatement. We had the first SON of Thunder, now about two and I was six months pregnant. We literally knew no one in Nebraska, not one single solitary soul. It was even harder because Winters loved Alaska.
Yes, I mean he loved Alaska! He was running a daily newspaper and well, he was in his element. Great journalism was in his blood and heart. Oh, and we can’t leave out the awesome fly fishing and the incredible friends that became like family to us. I loved being a mom and was also Executive Director a Christain Counseling Center at our church. Life looked good to say the least.
So now we found ourselves starting over in Nebraska.
That was the beginning of a prayer journey I will never forget.
My spiritual life grew exponentially during those two years in Nebraska because I simply hung onto God for wisdom, strength and direction. I remember it like it was yesterday when we got the news we were being transferred, it came as a bit of a shock since we thought we were headed to Texas. But no, it was to be Nebraska.
I was in the hospital waiting room preparing to have an ultra sound and Winters came to the hospital with the news. I remember saying, “ Well is it a done deal or can we still pray about it?” Winters reply was simply, “We can pray about it, but it is a done deal.”
That day was the beginning of two years full questions. We questioned the move in our hearts and in our heads. As we look back, we probably would not have made that move. It is funny what age and insight can bring you, even when it is too late to change the outcome.
Nebraska was a confusing time, as well as a very sad and difficult one. So I did what I knew how to do, I prayed. I had been taught by a pro, my mother. I prayed and I read the Word and buried myself in Christian books and most of all the word of God. I really learned to pray and fast while I living in Nebraska. We knew God was with us, but it was still hard.
When the middle SON was born, there were no casseroles, no baby showers and no girlfriends to love all over the newest SON of Thunder. So again, I pressed in and prayed. I remember awakening most morning at four a.m. to nurse and staying up for hours to pray.
It was not all bad. In the two years we were in Nebraska, we made some close friends, friends who are still a major part of our life though we are separated by hundreds of miles. The middle SON was born there. Winters got his first old truck there and he began to write for pleasure and not just work. During that brief moment in time we even lived closer to family than we ever had or would gain. For all of that I am forever grateful. I most grateful that I found a deeper relationship with God than I had even know before . As I look back itt is a blessing that I can usually be able to see the light in the midst of that darkest times.
But the reality is we will have hard times. We will all walk through an “Egypt” experience and we will get through it with prayer and determination. Then ironically, you will probably find yourselves there again years later.
You will probably say, something like” This looks familiar.” I think I am in Egypt again “, and you are right. You may think to yourself, how can this be? How in the world did I get here again?
The road looks familiar yet different and the sand is as gritty as always. But you are right, you are in Egypt again. I wish I could tell you that once you made it out you will never travel through that dry and thirsty land again. But that is simply not the case for most of us.
But dear sweet sister, if you made it through the deepest darkest desert once, I promise you will make it through again. For this time your journey will probably be shorter because this time around you are older and wiser. You have more experience under your belt and more importantly, you are stronger in your faith!
On this Thankful Thursday, if you find yourself in a place like our “Nebraska” and you feel a bit lost and fearful of your future, I pray you will be encouraged that God will lead you and direct your steps. I pray that you will press into God through prayer and that He will bring friends to walk alongside you. Those that will bring you support, comfort and most of all love . Even if it is just one good friend.
And I pray that God will renew your strength for the journey that lies ahead. I pray your dreams will not be dashed and that you may stay inspired and of good courage as you travel your road, whatever the conditions maybe.
Remember that the God of Universe is guiding your steps through the sand this time once again!