This picture has HUGE significance to me...it is just 2 boys on bikes but to me it is so much more. A year ago we were in Scotland. Our kids were in school, we were hunkering down for another Scottish winter, channeling all the Danish hygge we could. We stocked up on candles from Ikea, dark chocolate, warm comfy clothes, a disco ball for the dark afternoons (sunset at 330pm). We had all settled, made friends, found our rhythm. At the same time I had heard in prayer to "pack our bags and get ready, we were going to move". That word didn't totally make sense to me--we didn't have any place to move to. We had sold our home, a lot of of our furniture, quit our jobs--where would we go?
Then, last September our 10 year old son told us he felt nervous about starting middle school in The States without knowing anyone. He either wanted to stay in Scotland for the next 7 years (not a possibility on a student visa) OR move now. We informed him school had already started and he would enter into 5th grade in the middle of the school year. His response was--"that would be perfect. If we start in January then my teacher will have time to help me catch up on everything I am behind on and focus on me since all the other kids will be settled already." Apparently this kid is an expert "mover" and this isn't his first new school rodeo.
So long story short, we bought plane tickets, sold our Scottish furniture and moved back to the states at the end of November. We had a few ideas of where we would "land" but nothing definite. After a long crazy month in December we had bought a car, found American health insurance and enrolled the kids into school in Bend, Or. We still didn't have a place to live and Greg was still working on his PHD. It took 6 months of short term vacation rentals before we found a house to move into. But that is another story, this one is about Sam.
Today, Sam left at 730am to ride his bike to middle school with our next door neighbor, also a 6th grade boy, who has become a good friend of Sam's this summer. They were meeting 2 other boys in the neighborhood and the 4 of them rode off to school. This time last year I couldn't have dreamt up a better scenario for our son. This is exactly what he was hoping for when he said he wanted to move, now. He wanted to start school feeling caught up on American math and spelling, and he wanted friends so he wasn't alone. We took a risk and it felt like we hung in limbo for months. Today as he rode down the driveway with his buddy to MIDDLE SCHOOL (deep breath) I had this powerful sense of God's provision. While we thought we were hanging in mid-air God prepared a place for us to land, specifically caring for my kid's desires. The other 3 kids start school tomorrow. They each have friends in their class, have amazing teachers and get to start school without being the new kid. As we parents attempt to follow God's call in our lives, it is a gift to know God is taking into consideration all of us and caring for my kids in the process. Today is a day of celebration.
Ali Millikan, Author
I love Father, Jesus Christ and Holy Spirit. I love my husband and kids. I believe that God is in the room with us; that hearing God's voice is for everyone and that it will change your day to day reality.