Sunday, December 19, 2010

Faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. Hebrews 11:1

The best decisions of my life have been made overnight. I moved to California overnight. We moved out of the Cayman Islands overnight and now we will move out of California the same way. To some this may look crazy and others it may seem exciting. To us it is both. You may wonder how we got to this point... to load up a car and drive 30+ hours with a 3 month old baby. We LOVE California. It is in my opinion the most beautiful state. There is so much to do, the lifestyle is so active and healthy, the food is so fresh and light, the sun always shines... :-) It is hard not to love.
There are a few things though that are not that ideal. We pay way more to rent an apartment then most peoples mortgages back East, there are so many people EVERYWHERE, finding parking spots is impossible at times...You get the idea.
So why now? Why overnight???
Every day for the last three months I have had flashbacks. When I am driving, when I am trying to sleep, pretty much all the time. Flashbacks that for me changed my life.
You see, I definitely have learned time and time again that life is short and precious. Many people that I love have gone on to eternity in the last few years and a few people have had very close calls. It is easy to say that you know life is fragile and precious and think you know, but for me I did not understand how much so until it happened to me.
I really haven't been living for God the way I have desired to. We have been doing the church hop, I have been judgmental many times of people and have not been living for others and Christ but for myself.
It is hard to see that sometimes. Sometimes you need a wake up call. I spent months not being able to get out of bed while on bed rest. I was in and out of the hospital constantly. A lot of good friends and family were praying for me and I am so grateful for that. I never knew how much my health had meant to me before. In the hospital I would long to just feel the sun on my face or the summer breeze. I would see people complain about work or their babies crying and think how much I wished I was at my desk at work. My husband had been laid off as well (construction industry) and we went from getting/doing what we wanted to both of us being out of work. It was a big change.
Our beautiful baby girl was born and unspeakable joy overcame us both, instant love overflowed.
A few days after I had a moment that changed me. My mind goes back there often and it is as clear as day. Beeping machines, doctors running, nurses holding my hand, panic and chaos surrounding me. After being sent home from the hospital my preeclampsia turned into Eclampsia and HELLP Syndrome. My husband was pacing and tears rolling down his cheeks. I asked my husband to call my parents. My parents that were 3000 miles away and thought I was on my way to recovering and health. No one answered. I heard the words that I just wasn't prepared for. The nurse said "we are trying everything we can, nothing is working". The doctor telling me I was skyrocketing and they could not bring my blood pressure down (it was very severe stage 4 hypertension 210/140 and rising). My husband pleading for them to please help me. I will never forget the look in the eyes of everyone in that room. For the first time in my life I realized how fragile this life is. How thin the ice is between here and eternity and it terrified me. The thought of coming face to face with my God scared me. Why? Because I realized I was living for myself. I am selfish, I am rude, and I am not the person that I want to be.
I remember asking the nurse, "Am I going to die?" She just held me hand and said we are doing everything we can, we are trying. I realized then and there, my life is not my own.
A lot of people say they will live for God when they get older. Some people are angry at God because life is not fair. Bad things do happen to good people and a lot of people lose faith in this troubled world.
It is easy to think of yourself as a "good Christian". I do not party, I do not do too many "bad things", or so I always told myself.
Sometimes the trouble is not what we are doing but what we aren't. I am not helping anyone, I am not making the world a better place. This is not a pity party and I am not looking for encouragement. Who am I? We all get older, we can have a lot of money and then lose it all. Some people have looks and then time marches on and what once defined them fades away. What is success? Is it a luxury car, an ocean view office and a nice salary? Is that what gives us value? All of those things can be gone in the blink of an eye. What we do for eternity is the only thing that matters. It is awesome to be surrounded by beautiful things but when times get tough and you know that no one is in their car rushing to your side, it's scary. My days in intensive care were sad. I did not want any of our friends to see me like that. I way bad shape. I learned that I was the only person on the floor that was "awake". The glass doors did not hide anything. The open doors did not conceal any of the noises of what was going on in there. Noises that let you know what was going on. As I seen my neighbor get rolled out after a long uninterrupted beep I grieved for this stranger. So what is life? Why are we here and what are we doing. I know that because of the gift of Salvation that I have a place in heaven one day. Not because of what I did but what He did for me on the cross. He died for me and He died for you so that if we accept Him we can have eternal life. If we have a personal relationship with Him. The Bible says Ephesians 2:8-9 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
Not of works, lest any man should boast.

[Spoken by Jesus] "...whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will find it."

Matthew 16:25

So we are moving. Moving because life is precious, family is precious, time is precious. We are moving to grow. We want to serve, love, change, and be closer to God.

I pray that if you read this today that you might stop and reflect on your life. The days that you have been blessed with. If you can walk that you may walk towards good, towards helping people in need. If you can talk, that you would bless others with your words, encourage others, build others up instead of tearing down. If you can hear, that you would listen to wisdom and listen to others. Be a friend. Take time to make this life about more than just you.

The road ahead of us is clouded with a lot of questions and some concerns but in looking back I can see the way the Lord has always taken care of me and led me to where I needed to be. I have seen His work in my life and in others lives. I have assurance in His promises. Where He leads me, I will follow. I had a feeling I was not supposed to get on that plane today, my husband did too. It is easy to say 'one day' but why not today? What is holding us back? Following your heart is not always easy but with God all things are made possible. We need to trust Him to take care of us.

After cancelling our tickets last night and questioning our sanity we decided to go to bed. My husband asked to watch a recorded House Hunters before going to bed. I said I was tired. Then he said "just one". I turned it on and the title of the show read.."DESTINATION DESTIN". :-) That is exactly where we are headed! We felt a peace :)

“The Spirit of God will not lead a man where the grace of God cannot keep him.”
— Author Unknown


  1. I'll definitely be praying for safe travels and for God's hand of protection to be on you! :) Good luck, Melinda!

  2. Melinda - I cannot help but feel responsible for pulling you to the West Coast, so far from your family, but for a purpose. To give my son and daughter an awesome role model for faith, love, and passion. We were on the receiving end of one of those spur of the moment decisions, and we leapt with you, and were thrilled with what we got - with her you were, and are. Thank you for YOU!
    We are in support of this hasty decision, although we know it has really been sitting in your heart for so long. You ARE needed elsewhere my friend! To be closer to your family, to find some specific need that is calling your name! I am thrilled that God gave you some peace of mind that your decision is the right one for your family (even if it was through a TV show :)...
    Take care my friend! We will be praying for your peace, your strength, your safety, and for your future.
    Use your hands and your feet to spread the word of Jesus all across this USA!

  3. wow...right in line with what I've been learning. Loved it!