After getting dressed, I got a phone call from my MIL asking if we would come to their house for Christmas day. This was a turn of events for us, and after a quick conversation with my DH, we decided that it was a good thing to do. They are moving soon, sometime after the 1st of the year, and this will probably be our last opportunity to say hello/goodbye. It seems strange since we have lived within 10 miles of them since coming to AZ in 1996. Our relationship has always been rocky, for a myriad of reasons, but we have endeavored to keep family relations going, traditions in tact, and get togethers frequent. It has required work on both sides, but that is what families are for, and that is how relationships survive for the long-term.
This change of plans required that I go out and get lunch materials for Saturday. I am having dinner with my cousin and family later on, so I hadn't planned on anything except for our traditional cinnamon roles and OJ at breakfast. It is not a big deal, and I will do this shopping tomorrow am. For now, though I am pleased that we will be able to make amends and let things be. It is God's will, I know, and I am trusting Him to reconcile and resolve the remaining tension so that we can be supportive and nurturing as God's children are commanded to be in the Word.
This whole change has caused me to think some things through, and I have been blessed to recognize God's hand on this as well as every other instance in my life. I met my Mom for lunch, briefly (she ate, I sat) and we talked about some things. Some unfortunate happenings have taken place in my parents lives just recently, and this has changed my focus a bit. Moreover, considering my situation and where I am right now, well -- all of this seems strangely odd, yet perfectly matched. I discussed my situation with my Mom and we chatted about the things they are dealing with -- I am very close to my parents, so it is normal for us to be open about things. There are no real answers, so we just talked and confessed our trust in God for His timing and provision.
As I was leaving these thoughts ran through my head:
- Over the course of the last year, God has provided income to me. It has come in small doses, and over time, has increased to where I am now in a pretty solid financial place. I marvel that I have never run out of money, and that I have bought everything (well, almost) that I needed. My cup truly runneth over!
- My work at Macy's has been the most difficult for me, but it has taught me to perservere, and shown me that I can make an impact in a place like this department store. I am well-liked by my peers and managers, even to the point where I am greeted with hugs and words of thanks for all I do. It is nice to be recognized, and to be needed -- and even though I find the work so hard on me physically, I have made a way there, and credit this as God at work in and through me.
- My graduate schooling is paid for, thanks to financial aid. My son's college (2-year) is paid for thanks to a scholarship for outstanding honor students. We will both graduate with honors, and will be able to pursue the next level of study (me, PhD; him, BA) with confidence of continued scholarship and need-based awards. This is God's provision for us, and there is no other way to say it -- it is His will, and He always provides a way for His will to be accomplished.
- I have taken over the majority of the bills and responsibilities in my home. I didn't think I would be ready to do this, but thanks to a special gift from my graduate school, I received unexpected income that has paid most of our bills to date (and will for the next couple of months). I am no longer afraid of being responsible, and I know that I can manage money well, and still live a modest and comfortable life without constantly fearing that the money will run out.
- My search for full-time work has not yeilded any opportunties yet, but I am confident that I am on the right track now. The Lord has led me to a company that I think might fit me well, and I have applied for two positions, one FT and the other PT. The PT position would be wonderful, and would allow me to work from home (both would really). It would work well with my graduate schooling, and will pay far more than Macy's. It would be a perfect solution to my job needs, and would look great on my resume while I finish my MA. After that point, my resume will be more modern, up to date, with current work in my field. I feel that this would open more doors to me, and provide opportunity for me to really excel with my new education.
- Lastly, as I consider everything going on right now, all I can do is say that it seems to make perfect sense to me. I don't understand it all, or why some sad things must always accompany happy things, but I can say that I see God's hand all over these details, and that somehow, I believe everything will work together for our good (individually and corporately).
I cannot explain how you have managed my life this past year, so all I can do is give you praise. You have manage the details, provided everything I needed, and made it possible for me to accomplish various aspects of your will. I trust you Lord, I lean upon you, and now choose to continue to abide in/with you for these other things, still unknown to me: a job (PT or FT), my parents needs cared for, continued grace in school, my housing situation, DJ's success in school, a second car (and driving lessons), and mostly a deepening trust in you as Lord and Mighty God. You alone are worthy to be praised, so I lift my voice and praise you now. In Jesus' Name I confess these things, and I trust you Lord for your provision of them. Amen, so be it, thy will be done.