There are a few things I know to be sure in life: God is real, my Mom is the most selfless person I’ve ever met, I’ve been blessed with a husband I don’t deserve, and His plans are always better.
If it had been up to me, I would have spent the entirety of my formative years in Richmond Heights, Ohio in a small three-bedroom ranch house. I would have graduated from Richmond Heights High School, and inevitably, like most other grads, went on to Ohio State. However, instead of living in the same home collecting memories with the same group of friends for 18 years, over the course of our childhood, my sisters and I were forced to go to two elementary schools, two middle schools, and two high schools. And after that, all three of us even went to two colleges!
Isn’t that nuts?
Each time Dad would make his little announcement that his job was yanking us away again, we would gear up for another city, another school, another team, another youth group, and another everything. As much as we cried and lamented our misfortune (we were a family of three daughters after all…), lo and behold, every time we moved, we somehow came to like our new place better than the last one. While my Dad’s new career success always played a hand in our happiness (who doesn’t want her own bedroom and a trampoline in the backyard?!), I think that moving had other perks as well.
With every move, our tight (crazy!) knit family became a little tighter. Believe me, for long stretches of time, my sisters were my only friends. And because literally nothing could be worse than facing a cafeteria of strangers as an awkward teenager, I now can walk confidently into new social situations knowing that I will always survive. On top of that, I have an impressive collection of Facebook friends that I didn’t fully appreciate until I was trying to launch a blog…
So while moving so much had its ups and downs, it has made me who I am. Plus I doubt that I would have ever have been able to convince my mother to let me get my belly button pierced if her guilt for moving a well-adjusted high schooler in the middle of her sophomore year wasn’t available as a bargaining chip.
I mean, aren’t His plans better?
And if it were up to me, at the blissfully ignorant age of 22, I would have married my college boyfriend in an Anthropologie-inspired barnyard wedding shortly after college graduation. Other than the fact that I could have saved a few dollar bills on the nuptials (it may have been hard to figure out where that girl he cheated on me with was going to sit), there would be little else that would be working for me today. If I had to guess, I would probably be living in Ohio somewhere, a couple kids running around, miserably lonely with a husband more focused on his work than on his faith and more in love with himself than with me.
But instead, when said boyfriend’s Dad got sick that year (and made a miraculous prayed-for full recovery; praise God!) and he decided to focus on his family instead of our future, I walked my broken heart into the back row of a downtown community church because I had heard that cute boys went there. True story.
God works in mysterious ways, eh?
And instead of a new boyfriend, I found Jesus that fall. And instead having an underwhelming ill-fitted love story, I fell in love in a whole new, earth-shattering way.
Helloooo! Aren’t His plans better?
And at 26, if I could have called the shots, I would have toasted my 27th year with a summer Wisconsin wedding in a great hall marrying a Fire Chief’s son. I would have been happy enough to start, but eventually, I bet I would start to see the red flags that were waving wildly for the people that knew and loved me. They saw the darkness between us that would have permeated a marriage and a family.
But instead, God told me “to walk by faith and not by sight” the night that guy let me go.
And instead of finding myself engaged, I found myself that spring. After all, I had slowly been giving up parts of me for a long time.
And once the fog of my break up had lifted, I rode my awesome new scooter (everyone has their impulse purchases after a break up, right?!) to a friend’s BBQ and ran into an old acquaintance named Dan. And in the name of romance, I Facebook messaged him my number so we could play volleyball that summer. And from there, the rest is history.
Aren’t His plans better?
You’d think by now I would get the point. And my loss of control wouldn’t set me into a tailspin of anxiety whenever a new twist of life came my way. But even though God continues to show me that His plans are better, I still remain 100% terminally human. Which means I still make a mess of things. But even though I’m a hot mess, time and time again, I have to thank God that He doesn’t let me make the plans.
Because His plans are ALWAYS better. Even when in the moment, I think they suck.Because His plans are ALWAYS better. Click To Tweet
Side note: I hope that if I ever have to move to a new city, I can channel my inner-Wendy Bray and make sure that our family gets settled as quickly as possible. I swear, that woman can make friends faster than anyone I know; it’s probably her aforementioned soul of an angel.