Several times over the past few weeks I’ve sat down to write a blog post, only to find that my fingers just couldn’t express my heart as they flung across the keyboard. Maybe it’s because both my heart and my head have been bursting at the seams lately, and even I am unsure of how to express my thoughts. So here’s my feeble attempt.
Some of you know that Tanner has been doing the photo/video editing at our church over the past couple years. What started as a hobby and opportunity to serve the local church has shifted drastically to a passion. I’m not kidding you, sometimes I think his very heart beats in rhythm to the videos he’s editing. He is in love. Seriously.
Several months ago, Tanner mentioned (out of the blue) that he thought it would be awesome to make and edit videos for missionaries. Editing videos at church has shown him the vast need for sharing stories. And not just any story…stories of God’s deep and vast love for people. Stories of redemption through Jesus. Stories that breathe life. Eternal life. Maybe, he reasoned, there is a need for that same story-telling ministry outside of Des Moines, Iowa.
Fast forward to now, and that little spark of a thought has ignited a forest fire within his heart. And while my heart is beginning to smolder with that same fire, I must admit that I’m struggling to keep my heart’s flame going. I swear I must have an inner-scitzofrenic…my emotions can run from thrilled and excited to scared and unsure, all without a moment’s notice.
I realize that sounds silly to many of you. You have spouses who travel for work, or maybe you yourself travel often. But for my family, this in uncharted territory. We’ve never, in the almost 14 years we’ve been together, flown anywhere on an airplane. In fact, I’ve never even seen the inside of an airplane! We’ve planted our roots deep here in our cozy little house…and while I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that, I’m realizing that having a husband who travels part-time will be a huge adjustment for me. While I am very excited for this opportunity for him, the Type-A OCD Emily emerges…I begin to see that this makes no sense on paper. These trips would be self-funded, as would be acquiring the camera and computer equipment he would need for the trips. If you’re familiar at all with travel and equipment expenses, you know this is no small task. While tag-teaming to clean up one child’s vomit in the middle of the night last week, it reminded me how much I take for granted having Tanner here all the time. I realize I am not a very good parent without him. And then my mind wanders…having him gone for a week or two at a time would be challenging in lots of ways. But what if it’s longer than that? What if his plane crashes? What if he contracts some weird illness in another country? What if, what if, what if….
As I have wrestled through these feelings and thoughts, God has brought two songs to me that have been helpful in calming my heart. I’m understanding more and more each day that God’s plan for our lives is the best plan, and I do not want to be guilty of standing in the way of His leading. And if that means packing up my husband for a trip half-way around the world, then I want to do it with a willing heart…not begrudgingly or half-heartedly. These two songs have been powerful to me the past few weeks.
And so, if you feel led to do so, say a prayer for our family? Please pray for guidance in this journey. Tanner currently has his application with a local missions agency in the works; and, as of last week, a couple new opportunities have presented themselves as possibilities along the way. (FYI…he’ll still be employed where he’s working now. These trips would be short-term trips, where he’ll travel using the vacation time he has at work.) He’s super excited, I’m excited most of the time, and our kids are oblivious. 😉 Your prayers would be appreciated!
Blessings to you all today! It’s a winter wonderland around here today. Our plans for the evening involve a fire in the fireplace, a pot of decaf coffee, and watching the Bill Nye/Ken Ham debate livestream from answersingenesis.org. Have you heard of this? Bill Nye (as in Bill Nye the Science Guy, remember him?!), a hard-core scientist will be debating live with Ken Ham, a Bible-believeing Creation scientist. It should be a fascinating event, and we are excited to watch! Enjoy your evenings!