Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Life on "Pause"

I'm beginning to feel like Bill Murray's character in the movie "Groundhog Day" in that I seem to be having the same conversation over and over and over again.  It begins with the question, "So, do you have a moving day yet?"  

As well-meaning and innocent as it sounds, to answer the same question as often as I have in recent weeks has become a wearisome task, because I have no answer.  The only upside to this particular question is the fact that it has replaced the 4-year refrain, "So, is there any news on the job-search?"

Here's the situation: the reason we don't yet have a moving date.  In order to move across the country we need to haul all of our belongings with us.  In our 27-ish years of marriage and life with 5 kids we have accumulated more than will fit in the back of a car,... or two.  After 4 years of unemployment any "cushion" that we might have had in the bank was whittled hacked away and is now non-existent.  Renting a truck to move said belongings all the way from Pennsylvania to Texas will cost several thousand dollars.

Jim has been able to sign a lease for a home for us and is about to be paying the second month's rent on a lovely little empty house.  He has begun transferring the utilities to our name and paying for things like water and electricity, which we are not yet using.  Oh, and we still have obligations to pay for the utilities which we are using in Pennsylvania, since the kids and I, and all of our belongings, still live here.  If you do the math, you'll see that we are now paying for two homes in two states, for one family.

So, back to the issue of paying for a rental truck to move our stuff.

*cricket,... cricket*

It's hard to live "in between" like this.

I am homeschooling Isaac, our youngest, who is a sophomore this year, and he is on track to be taking Chemistry.  I am neither qualified nor remotely able to teach Chemistry.  We therefore need to have Isaac in a class with a co-op.  In June I found, through the help of my cousin, a co-op in San Antonio where Isaac could take Chemistry.  I registered him for the class, bought the required books, and,... they began meeting for classes August 21st.  Now he is taking Chemistry at a distance, completing the assignments and emailing them to his dearly gracious teacher, but missing out on the class instruction, the labs, the explanations in person for which the class is so very valuable.

Our church here is beginning many new and exciting things since we have just moved into our new building and are able to do so much more with the new space, like hosting outreaches to the surrounding community and having a new kids' ministry on Wednesday nights.  It's also that time of year when the new women's Bible studies begin.  Yet we can't get involved in any of these because we're not going to be here... or so it would seem.  But here we are.

And then there's Jim, who has been living in San Antonio since the beginning of June, out of a suitcase, in guest rooms of dear, generous people, but not with his family.  He needs us to be there.  A common follow-up to the question of when we are actually moving is, "Does Jim like his job?"  I have no idea!  His job, which is a blessing to have— make no mistake about that— is the reason that we must move across the country but can't, the reason why we are separated for so long, and might be a rather nice job for all I know.  But this much I do know, this is the job for which we prayed for four long years, yet the very answer to those prayers is a drawn-out trial of its own.

We need to be there.

With us it always seems to come down to money which we don't have.  Jim is earning a paycheck, our church is continuing to help us as much as they can, and we are selling stuff.  Rather, we have put a number of items on Craig's List to sell, but that seems to be a slow process.

It's becoming very difficult not to feel as if we are merely a drain on those around us.

I'm going to end here, because I'm sliding into the downward spiral that inevitably comes at this juncture in this train of thought.  I'd so much rather be a giver than a taker, yet it seems that all we're doing is taking, needing more, taking more, not getting enough, still here....

I know that our God will supply all our needs.  And we are not begging for bread.  Our deepest needs are met in Christ— and this is no small thing to me.  It's just that, some days, the sanctification through which our Lord is calling us to walk looks like a longer road than I have the strength for.

I know that this all sounds like a great pity-party.  Complaints upon complaints.  Yet, so goes the conversation, every week.  I am sorry, I really don't like to complain.  Frankly, this is one of the main reasons why I have not posted to the blog in so long.

Can we please talk about something else?


Sharon said...

So sorry to hear about being in limbo. I know, it's hard. We spent several months in a (thankfully) furnished apartment when we moved to TX while we waited for our shipment from Panama, and then waited for mold remediation to be completed because it arrived with growth! Hopefully it will be done soon.

Nicole said...

My dear friend,
You are loved by so many and you and your sweet family are such a blessing to those who are wanting to help you. God may be using this for another season when you are on the other side and able to help someone else in this same situation. Hold on to Him. He will see you through. And in the meantime prayers to you and yours. Miss you!!