This week is filled with a flurry of activity, as we prepare to move to a new home. My heart and mind are caught up in many thoughts as I pack, throw away, and try to get my family ready.

I have thought a great deal about our first year in Colorado. This past year has been a quiet, yet burning crucible, with some of the more difficult trials that we have faced. They have been so personal that I have not written many of them.

But as I look back on this year, I am astonished. It has been a year of tremendous growth and beauty. This year has changed us forever, and we will never be the same. And that is largely because of the difficulties that we have faced. I wouldn’t trade those things, painful as they have been, for anything.

The other thing that has astonished me is that we have somehow been okay. This year has met us with burdens that are great, as we have been unable to sell our home and as we have gone through a very costly cross-country move. Yet somehow, as we have strived to follow what the Lord has directed us to do, we have been alright. In fact, we are flourishing. We have been blessed abundantly, and somehow, we are doing well, in spite of the turmoil in the world.

It has truly taught me something. That has we try to do our best at following what the Lord says, we will be taken care of. I had a conversation with an acquaintance recently who was angry at me for suggesting that she trust the Lord, and she stated that “If we leave it up to Him, we will suffer. I have to make my own decisions.” While it’s true that you do need to make decisions, and that you do have the possibility of suffering, the only way to joy is through Him. I felt nothing but sorrow for this woman, whose pain was evident. But my sorrow was not for any misfortune she may have had. It was for the lack of trust and love for her Father, Who so dearly loves her.

Somehow, regardless of everything, the Lord has blessed us beyond what seems possible. And I believe it is because of this, which has been my creed since before I had a family:

“And the work of righteousness shall be peace; and the effect of righteousness quietness and assurance for ever.

And my people shall dwell in a peaceable habitation, and in sure dwellings, and in quiet resting places.”
Isaiah 32:17-18
I believe that, regardless of where we have lived or what has been happening, we have dwelled in a “peaceable habitation,” because we have tried to follow our Father. I am truly one of the most vastly imperfect people that I know, so imperfect and full of error that at times it causes me great sorrow. But I believe firmly in a loving Father who sees our hearts, and Who knows, in spite of imperfections and sins, the desires of our hearts, as well as our potential. Somehow, even though we are terribly imperfect, He blesses us anyway, when He knows we are genuinely trying our best to be righteous. He blesses us with peace, quietness, and assurance. He blesses us with a peaceable habitation.

And sometimes these blessings come to us in different ways. This past year, some of our greatest blessings have been our profoundest trials. And some have been bounty in spite of leanness. But always, as we have strived to do our best, there has been a peaceable habitation, and quietness and assurance.

As we prepare to go to a new home, my greatest hope is to create for my family a “peaceable habitation,” a “quiet resting place.” And I know that the only way to truly do that is to follow our Father, and to strive with all my heart to do as He asks.

5 Responses

  1. Jessie Mae

    Well said… ever since our conversation the other day I have been thinking about how horrible this past year has been, but also how blessed…. I'm not sure we would have been so incredibly blessed as we have been without all the "horror"…. And as you said, you wouldn't trade it for anything…. Neither would I…. Thank you for your wisdom and helping me see that life is indeed beautiful :) I love you!

    October 27, 2009 at 5:49 pm

  2. Debra Domenici

    Ann,I did not know that you were moving. I hope that you all enjoy your new home. I know that there has been a lot that you have been struggling with that you have not put on here, but I know how strong and faithful you and Matt are. You have truly been blessed with a beautiful family. We really need to talk and do a lot of catching up one of these days SOON! We love you and are here for you. Thank you for your beautiful writings. They truly do inspire and life me up.Love you all!

    October 27, 2009 at 9:07 pm

  3. Nicole

    it takes a lot of stamina to move… i'd love to call soon. hang in there!

    October 28, 2009 at 3:02 am

  4. Chantile

    I'm so excited for this new transition in your life! :) I love you so much! :)

    October 29, 2009 at 10:05 pm

  5. Christine

    Isn't that an interesting irony of life, that (if you let them, by trusting in the Lord), our greatest challenges can in the end become some of our greatest blessings? I'm glad you're not choosing your friend's philosophy!Good luck with the new place! Love you guys!

    November 4, 2009 at 8:02 pm

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