“Honey, would you tell me if I was crazy?”
Those are not the words you want to be woken up with in the middle of the night. But that’s exactly how my husband woke me up almost three months ago. Then, he proceeded to lay out this plan for me that he thinks God is calling him (us) to. As a pharmacist, he has accrued a significant amount of student debt and we had recently decided that we wanted to aggressively attack that debt. Work was also becoming more stressful for him and we were discovering just how un-flexible his schedule is and how nice it would be for him to have a job that allows him to be home more. The night he woke me up, he was driving home from work when he was hit with an idea. He remembered hearing that the Indian Health Services offers loan-repayment programs for pharmacists that work in some of the most under-served area. While I was sleeping, he stayed up researching the program. In college, I did my student teaching at a small Christian school near Gallup, NM. When I left New Mexico, Brad remembers me saying I didn’t feel my story was done there yet. He also remembers how much I loved the school and the community there. He figured if he could find a hospital with an open pharmacy position near the school it might be something worth pursuing. Sure enough, the hospital in Gallup is not only part of the program, but also had an opening. By time he woke me up, he had it all figured out. He could work at the hospital and we could live on the school campus each volunteering our time there. We would have no problem making friends and our children would experience a wonderful culture, a great sense of community, and live in one of the most beautiful places in the United States.
Fast forward almost three months later, we’re still pursuing this crazy thought. A couple weeks ago we put our house on the market (something that was planned even before this crazy thought!). Last week, we made a quick trip out to New Mexico for an interview and a chance to see the hospital and talk to the school. We still don’t know what is going to happen. My husband is convinced that God is calling us to. For nearly two years, we’ve been throwing around words like “weird” and “radical” when talking about our faith and here we are with an opportunity to live out those words. On the outside, this might appear to be a very brave thing, but the truth is I’m terrified. I have made many long-distance trips away from my family, but I have never moved away from them. And I have never moved my whole family to a place where we know no one. The truth is I’m terrified. Gallup is a fairly remote area with no Target in sight! I have to start over. I’m scared of being in my house all day with my children while my husband is at work meeting new people. I’m scared of not being connected. I’m scared of my children being away from their grandparents and celebrating birthdays and holidays alone. Even though these fears are real and very possible I’m trusting both my husband and God. I’m trusting that my husband is following the lead of the Lord and doing what He wants us to do. I’m trusting that my husband is listening for the Lord’s leading in our lives. And I’m trusting that God will be by my (our!) side the whole time. If this is God’s plan for our lives, we do not go alone. He will give us his peace. He prepares the way for us. That does not mean it is going to be easy. I, personally, have found great solace in the story of Moses leading the Israelites into the Promised Land. Even though Moses was doing what God told him to do, he was met with obstacles the whole way. But in the end, the Israelites made it and they had God’s physical presence with them in the form of the pillar of fire and cloud the entire time. I’m holding onto that promise. The promise that God knows what He is doing and He is with me every step of the way, I need only trust Him.