Fast forward to 1990.
“What I always feared has happened. What I dreaded has come to be. I have no peace, no quietness.” (Job 3:25)
Okay, so I know there are worse things in life, but to be uprooted as a Junior in high school from a small rural farm town in the Midwest to a thriving metropolis in the Deep South… it seemed at the time I’d be hard pressed to find a fate any worse than just that.
What’s interesting is that I can remember thinking, back before we ever even knew we’d be moving, how lucky I was that my dad had a good, secure job and that we’d never have to worry about something like moving… let alone to the ‘other side of the world’. I had always felt bad for any ‘new kids’ and I just knew that I would never be able to make it through such an experience. Funny what you worry about at 15, especially considering the amount of security I seemed to feel with Dad’s job.
Next thing I know, I’m being sat down and told that just in a matter of weeks, we’d be packing up and leaving our home for Georgia. (….What? Georgia?!) I’d be finishing up my last 2 years of high school with all new people, a million miles away from home, friends, family… the very thing I had sworn I’d never be able to do.
It probably helped that it was such short notice. I don’t really even remember much from the weeks leading up to the move. They were filled with sorting, packing, pitching, house-hunting and somewhere in there, Jodi’s graduation. All very quick and surreal.
Of course, that’s not to say I didn’t have my share of tears and skidmarks all the way down to Atlanta. There were.
However, I was blessed enough to have a best friend from home who helped me through the transition (even bringing an element of excitement to it all) and was there for me. I also acquired a new best friend here, who’d been placed in the same boat as me and shared many of the same thoughts and feelings as I had. Jodi had stayed in Illinois to attend college, so these two relationships meant the world to me.
As it turned out, as overwhelmed and disenfranchised as I may have felt at the time, I had several loyal friends from home who’d written me every week (boy, if only there’d been email and facebook back then!) and a number of new acquaintances here who helped with the transition. And though it may have felt as though I’d been seriously derailed… in my 20/20 hindsight, I see now that it was in keeping me on the right track all along…
I’m studying the book of Esther right now and one of the most intriguing and encouraging elements to the book is the fact that it does not mention the name of God, not once, throughout the entire 10 chapters. However, it is increasingly evident, upon further study, that His fingerprints are all over it. Looking back on these chapters of my life, I’d say the same could be said about my story. He may not have been realized or acknowledged along the way… but I know now that His handprint is most assuredly stamped on every last minute of it…