"And I will restore to you the years that
the locust hath eaten, the cankerworm,
and the caterpiller, and the palmerworm..."
This Thanksgiving marks a year since my move, and the above verse totally captures the essence of how it feels. Even though it has not been a year without challenges, the Lord has awesomely intervened to work them all out for my good and for His glory.
As I get ready to celebrate, I think of each child, grandchild, and great-grandchild, and feel so blessed to see how our family has grown and, most of all, blessed that the Lord has allowed me to be a part of it. There was a time when I never even dreamed of the possibility.
I think of the previous 12 years after I left New York and settled in Virginia, and the bittersweetness of it all. The feeling of isolation, the difficulty making friends, perceiving myself as being on the outside looking in at a church where the teaching was good but I never felt truly included.
It was a lonely time, a time of struggle, a humbling time, a time of feeling that the Lord had put me on the shelf, a time where I learned much about patience and trusting Him even when I could not understand the whys or wherefores, and then finally, a time of resignation and acceptance.
I think of how it was when I reached that point of acceptance that the wheels of change were set in motion, and suddenly, between the events that took place one evening and the decisions made the next morning, the Lord unexpectedly took me off the shelf and landed me in this small town that I have grown to love.
Here I became part of a new church family that has embraced me with open arms and enabled me to make use of the gifts God has given me. Since day one, I have felt loved and valued. I have wonderful neighbors too, and once again, the walls of my apartment ring with the echos of joy and laughter as friends and family come to call.
I don't know what the next year has in store, but I intend to gratefully seize the moment and savor every blessing the Lord has provided for me to enjoy right now.