Loving the Lord, Serving Him Wherever He Plants Us!

Timely Devotion and answering some questions.

From my Daily Guideposts devotion today…how appropriate for us as we begin a new journey in our lives.
“To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: A time to be born, and a time to die…”  —Ecclesiastes 3:1–2 (KJV)
It was picture day at my daughter’s preschool, but Jada wasn’t as excited about it as I was. She hated the skirt I’d picked out because she wouldn’t be able to do cartwheels in it. She didn’t like the wavy pigtails I gave her either, worried that her friends would laugh at her hairstyle; she wanted braids instead.
Why is my daughter concerned about her hair at age four? I worried. What will age fourteen bring? We finally compromised on the outfit, adding leggings beneath Jada’s skirt. I won out on the hairstyle, insisting that her classmates would love her pigtails.
I drove Jada to school, feeling frazzled and frustrated. “Have fun today,” I said, bending down to kiss her cheek. As she walked away, my eyes suddenly welled with tears. My baby girl was growing up so quickly. It felt like just yesterday I’d held her in my arms and caressed her nearly bald head. Where had that mass of red hair come from? And when did she develop an opinion on everything?
Jada was growing up, letting go. It’s time for me to let go too, I thought, wiping away my tears.
Change is hard. But I was learning that instead of lamenting no longer being home full-time with my daughter, it was time to be grateful for the opportunity—and the freedom—to use my gifts elsewhere.
Digging Deeper: Psalm 139:13–16, Daniel 2:20–21
We have had many questions about our decision to move to Oregon…why would we leave an area we love being in?  why would we leave when we just got planted in a new church family?  we thought you loved GUMI and that was your dream job?  Thought you wanted to live fulltime in your motor home?  The list goes on….
Let me say that there were lots of things that contributed to our decision to move back to Oregon but foremost through everything that we have dealt with in our lives our faith and trust in the Lord has become stronger each and every day.  We truly believe that the Lord opens and closes doors for us and that He will continue to do so.
So let me answer your questions ~ why would we leave an area we love being in?  This is easy to answer…with all the traveling and moving around we have done in almost 40 years of marriage we have never been in a place/location we didn’t like.  We love being by the ocean, in the mountains, in the desert and even rainy areas like Seattle & Portland.  We believe there is beauty wherever we happen to be living.
why would we leave when we just got planted in a new church family?  We have been so blessed being a part of Open Door Community Church and truly believe the Lord had us there for a season, our faith has grown, during our 3.5 years in Branson we never found a church home, we attended many different churches and worship services but we never felt AT HOME.  From the first day we walked into ODCC we knew we were home.  And to be honest, leaving Cedarcreek & ODCC was probably the hardest thing in this new adventure.  We felt loved and cared about, felt a part of a congregation, was fed in the Lord’s word by Pastor Isaac’s sermons.  We never quite got used to the fact that our pastor was young enough to be our son, but hey, we got to be Grammy and Grandpa to three of the most precious babies we have ever met.  I was able to do the bulletins for a season, something I had missed for a long time…we were blessed way more than we gave to ODCC and will never forget our church family from there!!  And now, they all have a reason to come to Oregon ~ to see us!!!
we thought you loved GUMI and that was your dream job?  We loved being out at GUMI Camp USA, we totally believe in and support the vision, mission and goals of GUMI and we will miss not being in the day-to-day activities of GUMI but felt that the Lord was opening doors for us elsewhere.  We will always be a part of GUMI, we are still on the Advisory Board and Ali is still doing the bookkeeping.  We stay in close contact with Angela and Tim and look forward to visiting often at GUMI Camp USA and the Branson/Cedarcreek area.
Thought you wanted to live fulltime in your motor home?  The list goes on….we loved our little home on wheels.  We lived and traveled for almost 9 full years in her.  She was old when we got her and now she is almost 30 years old and we all know that when you get older, problems and issues begin to appear 🙂  We have donated the motor home to GUMI Camp USA…it is fully set up and functional is now available for volunteers to use…and when we walked out the door for the last time we felt blessed to have had her in our life and know she is in good hands and will now be a blessing to many who come to GUMI Camp USA.
As we traveled from Cedarcreek out to Oregon we talked a lot about our travels in our home on wheels and realized we loved having a mobile home to get from one place to another.  And we definitely do not want to give up our camping life…so we have already started talking about getting a Class C motor home to go for weekend camping trips and of course we have 5 Grands to share our love of camping with.  And Ali really missed having her own bathroom traveling with her…I think we stopped every 90 minutes or so for one of the many necessary potty stops.
So a new season has begun for us.  Sunday, September 27th we fly to Dallas, TX for two weeks of training.  We have heard that the Texas State Fair is going on and we have friends who we made while we worked and traveled with the carnival who go to Dallas every year for the fair, so we are hoping to connect with them while we are in town.  Then on October 10th we fly to Spokane, WA for a week of hands on/mentoring training and then on October 16th we fly back to Portland and then prepare to move to our new home in Newberg, OR!!
We are looking forward to exploring Newberg, as they have lots of recreational opportunities which you can check out here or learn about Newberg here, along with some great wine country that just screams beautiful drives andbeing only an hour from our son, Brandon & his family and six hours from our son, Jamie & his family!!!  And getting connected to a church and new church family and making new friends in the community we will be living in as well as around the area.
Yes, we feel a bit
about leaving our friends in the Branson/Cedarcreek area and being a part of so many fun activities and we will never forget our friends there (and we hope to go back for some fun visits and reconnections quite often) but we are also excited to spend time with family and friends here in the Pacific Northwest! And we hope our Missouri friends can come out this way for a visit or two.
Hope this helps to explain a few things!!

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