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Time To Move! (Changing Plans vs Meeting Goals)

I don’t know about you, but I love having a game plan.

I also love change.

So…I like to have a nice, loose game plan so I can change it in a moment’s notice.  ‘Cause that’s the kind of person I am.

Changing plans

For instance, I loved having the plan of always living in Montana.  It was a good plan.  We bought a small house and put in a big garden and got ready to raise our kids in beautiful Montana.

But then my husband came home with an idea that he needed to go back to school for (another) Masters Degree.

I loved the idea!  So, in two years we had baby #3, harvested two years worth of produce from the garden (enough to get us through grad school), sold the house, and moved.

If you remember, this is when we lived in the little apartment with all our kids.  It was small, cramped, and just right for what we needed.

Two years passed and he had his new degree…but no job.  So, we spent some time in his mother’s basement while he looked high and low for employment.  Not having a game plan was hard, but I held to the one plan that I knew would happen: we would move to a big city.

After seven months, he finally got hired!  But it was in an even smaller town than any we had lived in before.  And it was where my dad had grown up.  My dad the farmer.  It was one of those towns.

And I loved it.

Do you see what I mean?  Plan, yes, but flexible, absolutely. What a ride!

And, again, the game plan came: graduate school again in 2018, this time for a PhD.

We’ve prepared for two years for this!  We were ready!  We knew which school would be the best fit, and they were excited to take him in.

But then…it all fell through.  He couldn’t get time to study for his tests, so his scores were too low.  Our special needs boys got more specific in their needs, and we had no guarantee that we would have the support system we would need out in Michigan.  He came home one day to me crying because someone had called me a bad mom and had blamed our kids’ behavior on my bad parenting.

He looked at me, and I could see it in his eyes.  The game plan had changed.

He told me that maybe we needed to look into staying in our small town.  Maybe we needed to buy a house and finally settle down.  Too much change isn’t good for special needs kids, and here we had family close by, the best babysitters, and all of the resources we needed.

I felt it, too, when he said it.  It was the right thing to do.

So, instead of moving across the country, we’re buying a house right here in this little town.  It has everything our boys need, and a few things I wanted.  We close in 11 days.  We move in two days after Christmas.

What I mean to tell you is this

Life has one wonderful constant, and that is change.  Change is not easy all of the time, but it’s not always bad.  Change can be wonderful and exciting and just what we need to get out of a funk.

Game plans are great, and can lead us in a wonderful direction, but sometimes the end isn’t where we’re necessarily supposed to go.

When we sat back and thought about why we might have felt like my husband needed to go back to school, we realized the choices we had made that we would never have done had we known we would be staying here.  He wouldn’t have started teaching a couple classes at the local school up here, which turned out to be a great joy in his life.  With any luck, they’ll hire him on full-time someday.  And without thinking we were going back to school, we wouldn’t have felt the urge to push Domestic Ninja into a position that would really make an impact on so many families’ lives.  (I mean, you know how it is when things get hard – extra things like this get tossed to the side!)  But God knew.  He knew what we needed to get us in the position He needed us to be in.  We are both making greater impacts because we thought the end goal was what we were working towards, when really it was the path that was important.

Years ago, I saw a refrigerator magnet that had a great impact on me.  It said:

Goals are stars to be guided by,
not sticks to beat ourselves with.

Sure, it’s not the most poetic thing, but it is so true.  We had a goal.  We’ve had many goals.  But how miserable would our lives be if we were so stuck on the goal that we didn’t let God guide us?  In reality, doing His will is our goal no matter what else happens, right?

So…

So here we are.  We have a new game plan.  We have a new goal.  We are planning on settling down and raising our kids in this quiet little town in the middle of no where.

Does that mean it will actually happen?

I honestly don’t know.  And I’m okay with that.  I know the Lord is near, and that’s all that matters.  Because He knows.

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