This week marks five years since I loaded my 18-month-old dog into my '98 Malibu, with my dad in a truck behind me pulling a horse trailer loaded with all my belongings. We set out on a bright Texas morning and headed north. My then-boyfriend and his parents were just a couple of hours ahead of us on the same stretch of highway. It was a 700-mile journey made in faith. I knew where we were headed, but clueless as to what was beyond our destination.
I find myself asking at random moments this week, "How did we get here?" Whether sitting at my desk at work, feeding my dog (now accompanied by another smaller version of herself), driving my '05 Malibu around the city, walking around the neighborhood on a warm summer evening with my then-boyfriend-now-husband, drinking my ritual morning coffee--whatever the instance may be, I've asked myself that very question and reflected on the answer: God's goodness.
This week has been a real struggle for me in some ways. While remembering all of the good, I have also fought seemingly moreso than ever for contentment with where we are in life. As we walked around our quiet neighborhood last night, I became overwhelmed with frustration and anger as the weight of waiting hit me hard. As quickly as the frustration and anger overcame me, the truth of my husband's encouraging words hit faster and deeper. What I am needing right now is a heart of gratitude. I don't know when this season will end, I don't know the what or the where at the end of this season, but I do know one thing: there is overwhelming reason to be grateful! While reflecting on these past five years in Louisville, my soul is filled with praise to the Lord for all He has done and so richly given:
- A wonderful and stable job
- Two dogs that bring daily joy and laughter
- A church filled with loving brothers and sisters
- My health and the Lord's nearness with every doctor's visit and test result since my diagnosis
- Financial means to slowly but surely pay off debt
- Family and friends near and far who have been a constant source of support
- A husband who continually speaks truth, reflects Christ's unceasing love, and encourages when I should be the one encouraging him
I want to cry as I think of the very particular ways in which God has provided. And not only could I weep in response to such overwhelming gratitude, but I could continue writing the ways for hours. His provision is an undeserved promise, His nearness such a grace. I pray desperately for a heart of gratitude, and that this waiting season will not be a time when a root of bitterness grows. My God is good even when the day ahead is unknown. We don't know what the future holds, but He does and has assured us that we can rest in that! I want to look back on this season, after the next five years have quickly passed, and see that this was a time of great and much needed growth for both me and my husband. And not only do I want to look back in five years, but I want a heart that is grateful and experiences the joy of knowing Him today.