As you may or may not know about me, I have a longing to be living closer to family. This wasn't a problem in my younger days, but now that I have children, it's completely different. Anytime I meet a new mom friend who lives near her parents, or her husband's parents, I am instantly jealous, thinking of how much different my life would be if we lived near a set of grandparents!
Having my sister in law move here and marry my husband's best friend was definitely a blessing, and life has changed for the better! Someone to love my kids, WANT to be around them, support Gibbs & I in our parenting endeavor...it's amazing. But I want more (shocker eh?)
For the first three years of our marriage, I begged my husband to find a job in Michigan, where my family and friends live. Not really a possibility with the economy over there. So now, I have switched tactics, and tried convincing him we should move to Minnesota, where HIS family lives. He has two brothers, a sister in law, and parents all living near the Cities (and numerous aunts, uncles, and cousins)
Location, Location, Location.... I think my life will change for the better if I can only change our location. Basketball games with Karen & Warren attending and cheering on the kids, someone to help babysit while we attend small group bible studies, aunts and uncles in the audience when our kids are performing in their preschool plays.... but a friend recently shared a metaphor with me that really has me thinking and reconsidering my attitude.
Jesus compares us to sheep. Sheep (apparently) have a need to be surrounded by their flock. If they find themselves alone, they often panic. If the flock travels one way, the sheep will follow. Now, if only there were a shepherd guiding them in the right direction.... ah yes. I do have one of those.... A pretty good One.
I have trouble handing over the little decisions in my life to Him. But to follow the metaphor along.... if the sheep were ALL listening to the Shepherd, there would be no need to panic. God would always make sure they were surrounded. I know that if I can find a way to release these little decisions...like my physical location, school districts, preschool choices.... to Him, somehow I will end up on the right path.
I don't need to hold so tightly on to the steering wheel. If I am seeking first Him, I can trust that God will guide my husband in the right direction, and that He will make sure we are surrounded by a flock that loves us.... and I think it's ok to still pray that eventually our flock includes more of our family ;-)