A big change.

Stepping into the unknown.

It’s a little unsettling, right?

It has been for me anyway. So much has happened in the three years my family has lived in Colorado Springs. I have so many mixed feelings, because I love our church and our community. However, my husband Josh, my son AJ, and I are excited to embark on a new adventure in which God is leading us. Josh had been feeling for awhile now that we should be closer to family and that what God had for all of us was in Oregon (or nearby, since we’ll be along the Columbia Gorge). I wasn’t quite convinced, but the more I prayed for Josh’s life, AJ’s life, and our life as a family, rather than just my own life, the more I saw he was right. (Shoot!)

We are excited to be near family, green surroundings, tall trees, amazing trails, REAL lakes, and the coast. Oh, and the berries! Oregon is just awesome. I mean, I even LOVE gray days and rain. So it’s perfect, right?

This all sounds so wonderful, but, I gotta tell ya, God took me through the “roasting process” the past two months before the excitement part was really birthed. If you pray, “Test my heart and know that it’s true,” “Teach me how to guard my heart and become more wise,” and to reveal other things to you, you may get a plateful (or bucketful) handed to you in a surprising way! Trials are not fun, but James 1:2-4 is very true:

      “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.”

Sometimes in the midst of change, situations come our way that make the whole process unpleasant and distasteful. Change for the better doesn’t always mean “easy” and “awesome.” I believe God uses trials and unfair circumstances to refine us and temper us. When we look to HIM in every situation, we become more of who he’s called us to be, and our life aroma can be that much more effective. He’s the Master Roaster and Brewer. He’s in control.

At first, I hated everything I was going through (just being real, y’all). I was a hot mess! But I allowed the circumstances to draw me closer to God, and closer to my husband. I also see that God allowed the situation to be used for his glory and to prepare me for what he has next for me (and us) in Oregon. I was filled with so much doubt, but he also used others to pour truth, affirmation, and promises back into me. The key action word here is “ALLOW.” Sometimes we don’t allow God to have control, like the way a coffee bean roaster controls the flavorful outcome of a coffee batch. If we avoid the trial altogether, we never produce an aromatic smell/taste. Also, if we don’t allow God to have control once we’re in the trial, we burn out and produce an awful aromatic smell/taste.

There are other things we need to allow. We need to embrace friends, encouragement, and promises, being grateful for who and what exists in the midst of our struggles. We also need to embrace what’s ahead. Do not allow yourself to get stuck in a rut! Don’t shut out people and possible opportunities due to the difficulty of change or due to the temptation to give up.

Months ago, there were two things the Holy Spirit was whispering in my heart, and I believe I walked through both of these struggles leading up to this transition (moving to Oregon):

  1. “If the devil can’t take what God has given you, he’ll attempt to make you doubt what God has given you.”
  1.  “If the devil can’t sabotage the plans and blessings God has for your life, he’ll slyly attempt to get you to sabotage it yourself.”

Unless we combat these lies and struggles with the Word of God (the Holy Bible), and unless we truly take it to God, we cannot overcome. Stay in the Word, speak the Word, and speak LIFE over who you are in Christ. Allow truths spoken into your life by others to take root. Make sure you “water” the right seeds and “choose what you brew.”

You may not be moving to another state like we are, but any type of change can be scary, especially if you love the place you’re at! However, embrace God’s promises. Allow change to be more than a refining process. Allow it to be the trophy you display for God’s glory.

We are all going through roasting and brewing processes in life. You are not alone on this journey – this wonderful “life-brew of a journey!”