New Year, New Life
"Don't worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done."
Hello friends! So much has happened since I've written! Many of you have anxiety over the situation of our world and the craziness all around us.
Yet despite our inability to see how all of this will work out, God sees and knows and He is in control. While our circumstances may be difficult, overwhelming, or just plain hard, all we need to do is call out to God and rely on Him in faith.
Personally, I've had major changes in my life over the last few months as well. Most notably, I am now a GRANDMOTHER! Welcoming our sweet grandson into the world has been the most amazing blessing of all. Jaxon Ray Miley was born on December 15, 2020 and is now almost 6 weeks old. He's the most precious, adorable, and handsome baby boy you can ever imagine. Here I am holding him for the first time.
The BEST Christmas present ever!
I know every grandma and momma thinks her baby is the cutest. But SERIOUSLY, Isn't he just adorable? If more than a few days go by without seeing him, I make some excuse to have some Jaxon time. :)
In the months leading up to this little miracle's birth, a whole lot of changes were happening. My husband earned a job promotion that had him traveling throughout North and South Carolina -- mostly North Carolina. Since our home near Charleston was at the southernmost point of his territory, that meant extra travel for him -- and more time away from home.
For several years, we'd been considering moving to a smaller home to downsize our expenses and maintenance. With the job change and the coming grandchild both in North Carolina, we decided to move to the Charlotte area.
So back in October, we listed our home for sale, had an offer the FIRST DAY, hosted three estate sales in three weeks, and sold most of our furniture and many of our possessions.
Meanwhile, I prayed for someone to replace me at the nonprofit we founded in Charleston. God provided a wonderful new executive director. I trained her during the month of November while looking for a house in another state 3-1/2 hours away.
We moved December 4th, started renovations on our new house, and our sweet grandson was born early on December 15th. What a wild, wonderful ride this has been!
The renovations are almost done with ongoing paint and tile projects, continuous unpacking, organizing and reorganizing, buying furniture and appliances, and all the delays (COVID-related or otherwise), renovation, and contractor issues that are part of the process. The to-do list grows longer each time we check something off (or buy a piece of furniture on marketplace that, of course, needs to be painted!)
Yet life is settling in to a more normal routine and FINALLY I'm finding time to write again.
While all of this sounds and looks good -- now that we're settled -- the decision to leave Charleston and the process of moving has been both daunting and difficult.
Living in Charleston was my lifelong dream. I loved the town of Mount Pleasant where we lived close to everything -- our daughter, my huge network of friends, writers, and business associates, wonderful stores and restaurants, gorgeous views of water, palm trees, and sunsets. We lived four miles from the ocean. I walked the beach two to three times a week and loved it.
We had a comfortable home in an upscale neighborhood. God called me to found a nonprofit that He grew. My work was rewarding and I had big plans for the future. I loved my church and had recently made wonderful connections there. I finally found a Bible study group with fabulous friends.
I hated to leave my daughter and felt great guilt and anxiety about that. Leaving friends and my work were also difficult for me. And the beach -- what can I say?
But God made the way clear and showed me the many advantages of this move. Besides my husband's work and my new grandson, I've also gained more time with my son and daughter-in-law as well as built-in friendships with her family, neighbors, and church where her brother is the pastor.
Downsizing has given my husband and I financial freedom that makes retirement in a few years look like an actual possibility. (Side note: Dave Ramsey is totally right about the burdens of debt.)
Awesome bonus: We've already planned a summer beach vacation as a family, a visit with our daughter for her February birthday, and a family get together for my husband's 60th birthday in April.
While we've had to make some difficult decisions and hard choices, God has been with us all along the way.
And this little face makes it all worth it!
God is good. He provides every blessing. May each one of you enjoy all the blessings of this new year with health, happiness, and the peace of God.
"Then you will experience God's peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus."