This may come as a surprise to many, but I dearly long to return to life in the Lone Star State. While getting married, moving halfway across the country 6 days later and then getting pregnant 3 months later was, to put it frankly, chaos, I deeply cherish the time my husband, daughter and I spent in Texas. I feel like a mad woman because when I was there I longed to be in California but once we got the call that my husband would be able to transfer his job to California, I wasn’t even sure if moving back was what I wanted to do. I had four days to pack our one bedroom apartment by myself and I sobbed through each one.
My heart aches to return to life in the city and I’ve questioned over and over again why this is. Am I discontent? Possibly. Is my longing sinful? Maybe. . . I don’t know. I do know that ATX is where my husband and I arrived six days into our marriage. It’s where we fought, where we grew, where we had our baby, where we established our roots and had to figure out life just the two of us and the Lord. I’ve wondered if my hormonal hurricane postpartum is what led to us moving to California and I’ve regretted how much control the hormones seemed to have but what I’ve come to realize is that no matter how much “control” any outside (or inside) source may seem to have, they will never have the full, sovereign control of our good and gracious God who works all things together for the good of those who love Him. I learned that sinful or not, my choices can never thwart His will and in this knowledge I have realized His peace that passes all understanding.
I am thankful to be in California for now but am praying that one day, if the Lord sees fit, He would move us back to ATX. The Southern atmosphere is sweet and slow and holds a special place in my heart (apart from the humidity, naturally). I dearly miss the beauty of San Antonio in the midst of a sweltering storm, Cuvee Black and Blue, Lucy’s on the Lake, Harvest Bible Chapel Austin, Lady Bird Lake(/Lake Austin/Town Lake/The Colorado River), Whole Foods, all things Fixer Upper, everyone saying, “Y’all,” the Southern hospitality, wide open spaces, the green, Hook ’em Horns, brisket, breakfast tacos, the healthy culture (okay, just in ATX), and the pride of being a Texan (I’m not sure that I can actually claim the last one, but since I haven’t been in California for a year, I figured it’d be acceptable).
My husband and I talked about what would have happened “if” he had lost his job in Texas and our initial response was we were so grateful that didn’t happen because we don’t know what we would have done. We imagined being in such a situation would be really hard but the truth is, being in California we didn’t really know what to do and God has still shown Himself faithful. His character doesn’t change based on our location – amazing grace, indeed! I do see however, how God has been gracious to us as we found out last month that the location my husband’s company was operating in Austin was shut down due to poor productivity. The timing was interesting and somewhat helpful to my heart to know we didn’t make a mistake in moving.
Yet, how do I move forward? I’ve asked myself this and wrestled internally pouring out my heart to the Lord.
Here’s what I’ve concluded at least for now:
- My desire for eternity with Christ should never exceed my desire for any earthly home. May my heart long for the city whose designer and builder is God more than my desire to live in ATX or anywhere on earth.
- The bride of Christ has never been more beautiful to me. My husband and I had a wonderful church home in California that we left behind when we moved to Texas. What I didn’t know at the time was how cherished our Texas church family would become. While I long to be with our Texas church family, and I don’t know when we’ll see them next, my heart rejoices knowing that in eternity I will get to worship God forever with all the saints I hold dear. Who am I that God would allow me to partake in such glory?
- Fondness for former days can be foolish. Earlier this week I read Ecclesiastes 7:10 which states, “Say not, ‘Why were the former days better than these?’ For it is not from wisdom that you ask this.” I’ve wondered why it wouldn’t be wise to consider former days as better and I’ve concluded that it must have something to do with being grateful for what the Lord has for me each day. It isn’t wrong to hold memories dear but it is sinful to idolize them and I believe Solomon’s warning was for this reason. I should long for eternity more than any earthly season as that is where I will be know fullness of joy and pleasure forevermore in the presence of Christ Himself.
Ultimately, I don’t know whether or not we will one day return to our roots but I do know that I can trust God who does.
“For here we have no lasting city, but we seek the city that is to come.”