You would think 5 moves in 5 years would be enough, but the Lord is having us move again. Three months ago we packed up all our belongings and moved again. Chris' work moved north of town and his 1 1/2 hour commute home was just not worth it. We will always choose more time with him over anything else. So we agreed to move to the Woodlands but I said, "Never ever again. No more moves." I'm a girl that loves change, maybe even thrives on it, and even I am tapped out (so you can bet my husband who doesn't love change is done).
As we packed up our house and said goodbye to our home, we agreed we would not be saying goodbye to anything else. We were just moving 45 minutes north of where we were (with no traffic), so nothing else would be affected. So our beloved church, ">Bayou City Fellowship, wouldn't change because you can't change your family and this church was our family. Nor would the school, Trinity Classical School, we had chosen for our girls to attend. Nope, we could make it work.
Deep down we knew we were kidding ourselves. But we just couldn't handle any more change or choices, after all I was 8 months pregnant when we moved (don't exactly recommend that either) and my hormones were all over the place. I couldn't take any more goodbyes. So we told everyone nothing would change and we tried our hardest to believe that would be true. Chris and I probably knew all along more moves were coming. Every time the obvious stared at us we would push it off with, "Let's do one major life change at a time."
So we were able to move and nothing changed. Then we had a baby and nothing changed... until it did. Now that we had moved and our sweet girl was here it was time to focus on the next steps: how do we build community and serve our community out here?
As much as we wanted to justify staying at Bayou City Fellowship, we simply couldn't. One of the things we love most about Bayou City is it's core desire to be about Jesus and be Jesus to those around you. Now that would be really hard if we left those around us to drive 50 minutes each way to church and community group and other things. We knew we were being blinded by our love for the community and mission of Bayou City.
So one night during a 3am feeding we finally spoke the words out loud:
We need to move to a church in the Woodlands. We need to plant roots here.
Ugh. It was heart wrenching. It was also the right thing.
Sadly the following Sunday was our last one. It happened so quickly. The church was moving to a new location 10 minutes further the following Sunday, so it simply made sense to move when the church moved.
As soon as we decided on church, the school decision was clear. We needed to be here for school too.
After all a core principle we live by is a quote that has shaped Chris' life since he was in college:
We are in the Woodlands now. To stay in Houston for school and church wasn't choosing to be all here. It wasn't choosing more family time (which is why we moved). It wasn't choosing more time with our neighbors and community. It wasn't choosing what was right next door. We would be driving past tens or hundreds of churches that were Bible believing and God honoring on our way to our beloved church home. We would also be doing the same with school-- driving past so many great options on our hour drive to school.
So we are going to be all here. We don't know what that looks like exactly.
Chris has visited several churches to scope them out for our family while I stay home with Chandler. Watching him lead our family into the next place has been a really sweet thing for me. He has taken that job so seriously and is laying a foundation that us and our girls will grow up in.
6 years ago God gave me a very clear message to GO. The verse in Genesis 12 God called Abraham to "Go to the land that He would show him" came up about one million times over a few months. That word go comes up again and again since then. I've learned it's less about the going and more about the God who calls and choosing to trust Him to know where you are going to, because often times you don't know.
And we didn't know where we were going when we said goodbye to Bayou City Fellowship. And we didn't know where we were going when we contacted Trinity Classical School to let them know Karis wouldn't be attending in the fall. We have an idea of where we are going now, but that night at 3am there wasn't a clear answer of what's next. The only thing clear was we needed to be all here.
Our last Sunday at Bayou City Fellowship they sang the song "The Lord Our God" by Kristian Stanfill.
It was the first time I heard it. With tears streaming down my face and arms stretched out wide, I sang these words alongside the people that had loved and corrected and encouraged and challenged and believed in and with us for the past three years:
The Lord Our God by Kristian Stanfill
Promise maker, promise keeper / You finish what You begin / Our provision through the desert / You see it through ‘til the end / You see it through ‘til the end // The Lord our God is ever faithful / Never changing through the ages / From this darkness / You will lead us / And forever we will say You’re the Lord our God // In the silence, in the waiting / Still we can know You are good / All Your plans are for Your glory / Yes, we can know You are good / Yes, we can know You are good // We won’t move without You / We won’t move without You / You’re the light of all / And all that we need