Warm floral scented air rolls softly through open widows, streaks of sunlight warm curled painted toes and birds dance around fresh buds on the cusp of blooming. That is right my friends, the glorious signs of spring and summer are upon us! The seasons are changing. Winter is moving on and spring has arrived. It is so interesting to me that our lives often mirror the changing seasons. Sometimes the seasonal transitions are exciting, hope-filled and we face them boldly. Some are hard and painful and we endure them with prayer and God’s strength. Other season transitions are full of confusion and questions and we impatiently try to trust God’s timing. Some seasons transition on time and as expected. Others arrive sooner than we are ready or feel long overdue.
For those who do not know, Nick and I are moving into a season of transition. This month is the closing chapter for this season of our life in many ways. We are nearly at the 1-year anniversary mark of our marriage, Nick will be graduating in just a few days and after working with Breakthrough Youth for the past 4+ years, Nick and I will be leaving Breakthrough Youth and The Intersection Church. The main question that seems to be on the forefront of everyone’s mind is “Where are you guys going?” and the short answer is, we do not know…yet. I am aware that this answer is not very helpful so allow me to tell you a story about our amazing God and the challenges of trusting Him and being obedient.
Nick and I were married on a (HOT) sunny day in June and we committed from that very first moment of doing life together as one, to choose to say “yes” to God. We dedicated ourselves to intentionally listening and obeying God’s leading in our lives and seeking out His will together. It was a commitment that is easy to quote in words but comes at a cost to live out. God wasted no time in challenging us to live out this commitment. In the few months that followed our newlywed life, God initiated deep stirrings in Nick and I’s souls. I knew for some time that May was going to be a big transition month for Nick. I was aware of it from when we first began dating, but I always assumed that the feeling related to his graduation and school (finally!) finishing. Little did I know God’s transition plan was larger than anticipated.
A few months into our married life, Nick and I abruptly ran into a stunning revelation. After returning from our honeymoon, we jumped right back into our ministry life. Please understand, we love that we have the privileged of serving God within the church and doing ministry life together. We are still completely passionate and called to serve God within the church however, a few months into our new life, God revealed to use that we jumped in with the assumption that where God planted us before we were married was where we should be after we were married. Nick and I recognized that in the midst of a busy schedule (and honestly partly out of a fear that He might call us to change) we had not stopped to ask God where He wanted us to be now that we were married. Nick and I spent the next several months wrestling with God in prayer and seeking the counsel of friends, attempting to understand the promptings He was placing in our heart.
During this time, God revealed many challenging, exciting, hard, and hope-filled truths. We realized Breakthrough Youth had accomplished the vision and purpose that was set four years ago. Even now, as I think through the students who walked through The Intersection’s door, I can point to specific moments in every one of their stories where they experienced a moment of breakthrough with God. Breakthrough Youth needed a fresh vision, purpose and (the hard truth) new leadership. God showed Nick and I that we had brought Breakthrough Youth as far as we were supposed to. It was time to get out of the way for God to awaken new life in the group through someone else. I can say these words more easily now but first hearing them from God prompted a lot of tears and frustration. I love our group. The students that Nick and I have the privilege of loving on and hanging out with truly are the best group of students. God has allowed us to build a family within Breakthrough and I did not want to leave that. Breakthrough Youth is home and I did not feel ready to leave the nest. At times, I still do not feel ready but I have confidence in Nick and I’s decision. I am excited for what God is going to do in and through Breakthrough in its new season.
While this news alone was much to process through, God was not done with Nick and I yet. In addition to stepping down from Breakthrough, God showed Nick and I that He was calling us to move. Yikes! A new wrestling match in my spirit ensued. This was a scary and uncomfortable calling. Both Nick and I’s families are in Spokane, I have only ever lived in Spokane, and my job is in Spokane. God though, in His faithful patience, slowly tore down (and is still tearing down) my walls of control, self-reliance, propensity to stay comfortable, and aversion to change and trust. God reminded me of the story of Abraham. In Genesis 13:1 it says, “The Lord had said to Abram, “Leave your native country, your relatives, and your father’s family, and go to the land that I will show you.” God revealed His promises to Abraham, and who He was calling Abraham to be in the midst of Abraham’s new journey. He was faithful and with Abraham every step of the way. Abraham sometimes stumbled along the way but God was always there to help him get back on the path. I know God is calling Nick and I to leave the safety and comfort of our family and the life that shaped us so that we may grow deeper in Christ and who He is calling us to be. I know that He will be with us every step of the way and His grace is sufficient for any missteps we may take along the way.
Nick and I still have a lot of unknowns, we currently do not know what happens after May 31st. God has been revealing His plan one step at a time and we are learning how to trust Him with each step. The step that we know for sure is we are stepping down from Breakthrough and leaving The Intersection. I am fully confident our next step will be revealed once this first one is taken. While there are moments that are filled with “what-if’s” and anxiety and fear, even in the midst of it all my soul is filled with confidence in our great God. I know He has not called us to this to abandon us, trick us, or ignore us. He is at work even if we don’t see the results quite yet.
Are you facing a situation where it seems like God is asking something really big, really hard, really scary from you and you just do not know if you can be obedient? Are you experiencing a transition season and feel unsure of the outcome? Take heart my friends, God has not abandoned you. He truly does see you and He has not brought you this far to leave you stranded. It’s okay if your trust and obedience look a little messy. My journey through this season was ridiculously messy (shout out to my hubby who always got the tissues!) You do not need the next fourteen steps, you just need to be obedient with the one next step placed in front of you. Like Pastor Gary Hebden always says, “faith is trusting God enough to do what He says.” That is what we are trying to do, and that is what I would like to encourage you to do. Life is an exciting adventure and the best is yet to come my friends!