OUR FAMILY’S JOURNEY TO FREEDOM
This is something I wrote in April 2016 as I was looking back at the journey that Josh and I have taken over the past couple years to prepare us for where we are headed. I just spent time journaling throughout my day, so this is a very rough, unedited version, but it explains how we got to the place we are now as we prepare to move from Alaska and embark on a journey to California and possibly beyond. I originally wrote this to share at my Mom’s Club, but I wanted to post it publically in case anyone is wondering what the heck we are doing. I broke it up into four parts because it’s long.
Most of you know that Josh and I are moving in June to Redding, California, but you probably don’t know the process it took to get to this decision. It started over seven years ago when we took a trip to California and immediately felt drawn to the area. When we came home, we thought we should start preparing for a possible move. The only problem was that we never heard directly from God that it was time.
So we waited. And each time we travelled down there, we felt more drawn and more convinced that that is where we were meant to be. Because we hadn’t felt it was time, our dreams seemed to go on hold for a while, but we continued listening to God and being faithful with where He had us in the meantime.
Looking back, we can see how God provided for us and prepared us for this time. We had already bought and sold a couple houses and we were able to put money into savings. God directed us to sell our second house before we knew where He was leading us. We looked at tons of houses and considered so many options before this opportunity at the apartment complex basically landed in our laps. We planned to stay no more than two years, but we are now coming up on six years being there.
Through this opportunity, we have grown and matured so much as we learned to take care of 34 units and such a diverse group of people. We have learned to set good boundaries and we have learned to love better. This also gave Josh the opportunity to get out of a demanding roofing job and pursue drums, which is his passion. Because we do not have the pressure of paying a huge mortgage, Josh has had more freedom in work and we have had more financial freedom.
God also directed us to purchase a rental property a couple years ago, which we fixed up and began renting out. Then, suddenly, God told us to sell it a year later. As we prepared it to be sold, God told us that He would give us the next step after that. When we were in contract to sell, God made it clear to us that it was time.
Josh had already planned to go to a worship conference at Bethel in Redding, California in July, so that was our time frame and we felt total peace about it. After we settled in our hearts our plan, we began telling trusted friends and mentors who encouraged us and confirmed our decision. One of Josh’s good friends told him that God had told her weeks before that we were moving. For those people we trusted, our decision made perfect sense and so their trust in our decision only confirmed where God was bringing us.