“Thank you, have a great flight.” the flight attendant hung up the speaker. The engine noise of the plane hummed around us. Scenery started to move out the window as the plane taxied down the runway. Faster and faster, colors running together, and then, we were in the air. Buildings bigger than I became too small to see. Below us, the patchwork quilt of America faded away. We were finally on our way.
The night before we left, final loose ends were completed into the early hours of the morning. No one got much sleep. Our flight was scheduled to leave at 2:51 that afternoon, and we would arrive in London at 11:24 the next morning (7:00 am our time).
If you walked down to the basement of my grandmother’s house right now and peeked in, you would think seven severely unorganized individuals were attempting to open a consignment store there. We aren’t. We’re moving to England in five days.
Emotionally, we are ready to step foot on British soil. Physically, we aren’t – yet. Packing is hard. Packing for seven people who are moving overseas with a tight budget is harder. Thank goodness God can give us grace in chaos.
I remember back at the beginning of summer, imagining what the week before we leave would be like. Now, I’m living that moment. The excitement is coursing through all of us. Our England dream has become a reality. At 2:50 pm on October 1st, we take off from our home and venture across the ocean.
But along with leaving comes preparation – stressful, consuming preparation. So many variables have to be considered: the wet, windy weather, constantly growing children, limited storage space, school curriculum, carry-ons and luggage, and the list can go on and on.
The mop swept back and forth, polishing the memories that coated the house from top to bottom. I placed it back in the bucket and set it out on our front porch. The sunlight filtered through the windows, reflecting off the empty rooms, illuminating the interior that looked so different one month earlier. I paused in the doorway, looking around for the last time, soaking in the house that had been my home for eight years. Softly, I closed the door, shutting it on our ended story; a cherished home now awaited someone else’s beginning.
So many blessings – some bittersweet. Too many to count.
I remember the day our house came under contract. We were awestruck, awestruck at our God’s ability to sell our house, in need of a lot of TLC, with no sign, no realtor, no marketing. It had been listed on Zillow, looked at by three people, two had made offers, and the other wanted to come back for a second look – in one short, crazy week. Then it was over. Finished. Final.
Boy, our God is BIG.
Throughout the summer, God provided for us in so many ways. Our summer of blessings.
People tend to want to know what are we planning to do after England. We typically reply with the same answer, “Our ‘plan’ is to come home, but it’s up to God where we end up. Our family is ready to go wherever He directs us.”
Wherever He directs us.
One year ago, we were starting school, settling to a new schedule, just as every other average kid in an average family in an average American suburban home was doing. If you had told me that twelve short months later we would be doing everything but average…
I would have believed you.
The last few years, we’ve been watching “average” unravel. That’s a pretty long story. Every line of it points to a God of grace and goodness.