Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Happy Endings and New Beginnings

As leaves begin to turn along the Colonial Parkway and school buses shuttle kids back and forth to school, it is clear that summer has ended in our neck of the woods. But what a summer it has been! Although it saddens me that our "perfect summer" is over I can't help but praise God for the happy endings and new beginnings that have been part of our first summer in Virginia.

Among the biggest blessings have been:

Reconnecting as a family. Prior to our move we lived through a season of separation with Steve moving to Virginia nearly five months before the kids and I did. Family meals were nonexistent. With Chris and I both employed back home our conversations often amounted to nothing more than a quick phone call or text message. Now our family of four eats together often and we occasionally get together with Steve's brother, David, and his family, who live a little over an hour from us instead of a thousand miles away.

Steve and kids at Cracker Barrel on moving day, one of many meals we have shared together.

Living near the water. Through the years I have been heard to say, "I'm becoming my mother." But this summer, with many beautiful rivers, the Chesapeake Bay, and the Atlantic ocean within a short drive, I have begun to appreciate the love my father had for the water. No matter how often I visit the ocean front or Gloucester Point Beach Park I never cease to be amazed by the beauty of the sky, water, and wildlife. As I gaze across the waves I cannot help but worship the One who created it all.

Joy at Sandbridge Beach near Virginia Beach.

Steve and Joy at Gloucester Point

Rainbow and sea gulls at Gloucester Point looking toward Chesapeake Bay (top) and historic Yorktown (bottom).


Great "day-cations!" From sailing the Elizabeth River with my brother-in-law to strolling the streets of Colonial Williamsburg and the National Mall in Washington, DC, we have enjoyed great sightseeing on a shoestring budget. There is so much history and natural beauty near us that it will take years to take it all in. That's a challenge I eagerly embrace!

Fun with Chris and Joy in Colonial Williamsburg.

Washington Monument as seen from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial on a picture-perfect Sunday afternoon!

    David and Chris readying the boat for our first sailing adventure.



A three-month vacation! Being without work for the entire summer has been financially challenging. But we have had time to do all the things mentioned above and  settle into our new life here. God has faithfully met our needs and brought much-needed healing to our family after a long season of stress and heartache. We are still a work in progress but we anticipate a bright future as God continues to guide us into his perfect will.

Happy Endings...New Beginnings.  After three months of intense job hunting Chris and I are now employed! I started my new job as Church Office Administrator with Bethany United Methodist Church the same day Joy started her freshman year of high school.  Chris got a job working in the kitchen of a new restaurant just before Labor Day!  I love how perfectly God timed jobs for both of us, a happy ending to the latest chapter in our story.

With the start of a new job in ministry it is unlikely that I will pursue a writing and speaking ministry of my own. Although I will continue to write as God inspires me, my emphasis will be on growing more in my relationship with him and serving his church in Virginia. How long we will remain here and what he will accomplish through us are totally up to him.

And so the adventure continues...


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