The new year of 2013 found us preparing to move.
God had stopped foreclosure for the second time.
Now we were praying that He would protect Brett’s house sale so Brett could buy ours.
Both sales were moving along well.
We prepared to move. We had packed up most of the house back in the summer of 2012, so there wasn’t a lot left to be done.
How gracious God was to have us sell animals and pack and garage sale the year before. With a crying baby and little sleep, having less to pack and manage was a gift.
His next direction for us was to temporarily move in with Laura’s parents. We didn’t know it at the time, but a year before, Laura’s mom had felt that God told her we would be coming to live with them.
By the end of February 2013, the selling of Brett’s house and, consequently, the selling of our house were nearing completion. A closing date for the last day in February had been set. My dad could only help us move the week before the closing date, so we decided to move early.
We were leaving Coldwater, MS.
We were leaving home.
We were leaving the house where 3 of our 5 children were born.
We were leaving the barn where the kids annually welcomed a new litter of kittens and petted them nestled in hay with a red hen laying eggs nearby.
We were leaving the trail that connected my parents’ house and ours.
We were leaving my parents.
To move from Coldwater hurt very much.
The Lord was taking away.
“The Lord gave and hath taken away” (Job 1:21).
But He was only taking what He had given.
“Blessed be the name of LORD” (Job 1:21).
By His goodness, He had given us the Coldwater place. And by His goodness, He was taking it away.
And even in the midst of an unwanted move, a crying baby, sleepless nights, and Laura and I being fragile and exhausted, He was there with us. We had ample money for the move and living expenses for the first several months in Louisiana. Laura’s parents welcomed us warmly and gave up most of their house to us. I guess that’s what is required when 7 people move in with you.
We unloaded the moving truck in deep south Louisiana. It wasn’t until I rolled the last piece of furniture off the truck that Brett called to say the house sale was definitely going through.
How much like God to have us move before the deal was done.
He fits in a faith lesson any chance He gets.
A week later, the Coldwater place was sold.
When we left Coldwater, God lifted the ban on getting a job, though we still couldn’t “make a new life” anywhere yet. But Laura was sleeping so little from our baby’s crying that I couldn’t leave her for work. So, we lived on the leftover retirement money God had provided.
We bounced and rocked Little Man in every room in my in-laws’ house except theirs…and sometimes outside in the yard.
Laura was still exhausted, not getting much sleep, and couldn’t function much outside of getting out of bed and caring for the baby and maybe some laundry.
Our nights were filled with tag-team sleeping in the rocker, and our days were filled with occupying children, cooking, boys’ baseball games, and letting each other recoup from the night.
The waiting, the faith tests, the move, and now “the baby days” had taken their toll on Laura. She was emotionally and physically exhausted and not herself.
We began praying for her as a family, asking God to heal her and the baby.
Shortly after, she consulted a nutritionist who identified problems with Laura’s adrenal system. Tests were done, diet was changed and supplements were added, and she felt a great deal better in just a week and gradually felt better each week. After further tests and diet change, Little Man improved. Until then, we had held him for every nap, many times a day, for 9 months; if we didn’t, he would wake up crying within minutes. That totals out to around 5,674,586,364 naps. Or that’s how it felt. After the diet changes, we were able to lay him down to nap for the first time since he born.
They continued to improve.
The fall of 2013 was a good one. Laura was feeling even better, the baby was sleeping more, homeschooling resumed, and I was able to do part time work.
On the other hand, the winter was rotten!
From late October to March , we all went through two significant respiratory illnesses, two colds, the flu, and a horrible stomach virus. And when any sickness, especially a stomach virus, makes its way through 9 people in one house, it is not a pretty thing! And it takes a while to work its way through all of us.
But we survived.
Even during the sicknesses, we saw God provide medicine or money or both. And God used the illnesses to break my tendency to provide for ourselves – with everyone sick, I couldn’t work as much as I wanted. The sicknesses kept me out of the I Am Provider Mode and in the Wait and Depend Mode.
In His goodness, God took away the Coldwater place He had loaned us.
He brought us to Laura’s family to survive “the baby days” and slowly recover from 4 of the oddest years we had known.
We had seen Him part the Red Sea and lead us through the wilderness.
Was there a Promised Land?