January 2012

Well, the con­tain­er is packed and the house is clean every­thing seems to be going wrong but God is good. There must only be one expla­na­tion: we are going to bible col­lege! (and satan knows about it)

The last 3 weeks have been a flur­ry of activ­i­ty and Chris and I have bare­ly had time to catch our breath. With pack­ing, Chris fin­ish­ing up at his work, Christmas, New Years, fit­ting 3 house­holds worth of gear into one 20 ft con­tain­er, work­ing out how to trans­port all our bits which didn’t fit in the
con­tain­er, hav­ing farewells, work­ing full time though all of this, and then clean­ing the house up for the new ten­ants. It has been like a roller coast­er of emo­tions and life. I have been going through cycles of con­vic­tion that it will nev­er be fin­ished, to see­ing some organ­i­sa­tion in the chaos, back to despair that we have so much stuff, and then relief that we don’t have as much as I thought. What a roller coast­er. It has been hard to see God at work in all the busy­ness, and espe­cial­ly as we grieve with friends over our immi­nent sep­a­ra­tion. But in this lit­tle moment I can reflect on some of the won­der­ful works God has done in our lives over the last few weeks.

-We were able to have a won­der­ful Christmas and New Years with dear friends from Adelaide, although we missed our fam­i­ly it meant so much to spend spe­cial time with friends who are fam­i­ly to us in Adelaide. It was a bless­ing that the con­tain­er didn’t arrive before Christmas like we had orig­i­nal­ly planned so
that we were able to have that day com­plete­ly off, and I was real­ly grate­ful that a col­league was will­ing to swap so that I didn’t have to work on Christmas morn­ing and could cel­e­brate at church.

-We orga­nized the con­tain­er to take the gear from us and our new house­mates Stephen and Sarah, we hoped that we could take some of the stuff for oth­er friends Joel and Hannah who are also mov­ing to Melbourne but it was always a bit unsure as to whether it would all fit. With a lot of hard work from chris and some cre­ative pack­ing from mul­ti­ple friends (espe­cial­ly Joel and Anton) amaz­ing­ly it all fit in. In fact the only thing of the oth­er cou­ples that had to be left behind was a hand pow­ered lawn mow­er, and in a God planned moment, the small strip of grass out the back of our new house has now been con­vert­ed to peb­bles! We still have quite a few bits which didn’t fit in the con­tain­er but Chris man­aged to get most of it in the ute (more tetris pack­ing) and the rest fits snug­gly in my car

-Most of the extra fur­ni­ture that we planned to leave behind has been put to good use and some friends came and took the extra things which we had­nt been able to sell ear­li­er off our hands, we had just the things they want­ed, thanks God!

- A won­der­ful team of peo­ple from church came over and worked so hard for 4 hours last night to get the house from a place strewn with rub­bish and bits to throw away into an emp­ty sparkling shell. I nev­er would have been able to do it on my own, and wouldn’t have even thought to clean some of the things they cleaned. The boys also mowed the lawn, did the edg­ing and cleaned out the garage and fixed a leak­ing drain. I thank God for all of them with their gen­eros­i­ty (and hope they don’t think too bad­ly of me con­sid­er­ing how dirty my house was!)

-Chris was meant to dri­ve out of Adelaide at about mid­day on Monday after the con­tain­er and his car had been picked up fro trans­port to Melbourne. In one of satan’s tricks the tow truck for the car broke down and they couldn’t come and pick it up until late after­noon. Praise God that my boss­es were gen­er­ous enough to let me go home from work ear­ly to wait for the truck even though we were short staffed, and that there was anoth­er truck avail­able to pick up the car. Chris end­ed up leav­ing Adelaide at 5pm and despite not being able to see out the back wind­screen, lots of ani­mals on the side of the road, and only a few hours of poor sleep the night before, he got into Melbourne safe­ly at 230am and was a able to stay the night at the new house.

-I stayed with friends overnight, as I’m still in Adelaide for a few more weeks. I arrived late at night and didn’t unpack the car except for the essen­tials. When I went out this morn­ing to get the cof­fee I found that the back win­dow was bro­ken. But God is so good. The only thing so far that seems to have been tak­en was a very old lap­top des­tined for the give away pile but put in the car at the last minute because we didn’t know what else to do with it. Before I went to sleep I went back to the car twice to get my new lap­top and then my phone which I had left behind. Nothing else out of my very full car was tak­en (edit: I have since dis­cov­ered that anoth­er bag was tak­en, it con­tained some more valu­able items, in par­tic­u­lar a sewing bag with its con­tents that are irre­place­able, how­ev­er giv­en how bad the loss could have been I am still grate­ful that it was only 1 bag stolen that mat­tered) and there were plen­ty of more val­ued items in there (now safe­ly stowed away). Once again my boss­es have been under­stand­ing despite being very short staffed at work, so I can get the car sort­ed out and have the time to write this!

-God has pro­vid­ed will­ing friends who will let me stay with them over the next 3
weeks. It’s also a great oppor­tu­ni­ty for me to say good­bye well to these well loved friends.

-In antic­i­pa­tion, a num­ber of our Melbourne friends and fam­i­ly have will­ing­ly offered to help Chris, Stephen and Sarah unpack the con­tain­er on Wednesday. Please pray that it would go smooth­ly and no one would get frus­trat­ed with the process. I am so con­vinced right now that God is at work.

Even though things have been going against us He has been sov­er­eign. If only this clar­i­ty came all the time, and if only he was this clear with every­thing. Over the next 3 weeks chris will be unpack­ing, com­ing back to SA for CMS sum­mer encounter con­fer­ence, and start­ing a Hebrew inten­sive. I will be fin­ish­ing up at work for the next 3 weeks, includ­ing a week of night duty and then dri­ving over to Melbourne at the begin­ning of February. Please pray that God would con­tin­ue to be sort­ing things out even when it doesn’t seem like it.

About Gillian