There are moments in your life that will stand out and live in your memory forever.
Sunday night, I sat on my couch rooting for the New York Giants to pull off one more fourth quarter comeback. My kids were seated next to me. We wore our rally jerseys, we rooted, we chanted and when the Patriots got the ball back after the Giants went ahead 21-17, we sat on the edge of our seats, glued to the television, until the final second clicked off the clock. Then we celebrated!!
It was a moment that fathers relish. I was celebrating a championship with my kids as I watched their faces light up when our team finally won the ultimate prize; the Super Bowl! We were elated! And as much as I will cherish that moment for the rest of my life, I want to back the clock up a few hours.
At six o’clock on Sunday evening, I stood at the bottom of the stairs in our house and looked around at the smiling faces of the people who filled our home. I was surrounded by our extended family and in that moment, I realized how truly blessed we are.
It all started nineteen months ago when Stephanie and I sold our house, left our jobs and moved to North Carolina. We didn’t know anyone or anything. We were foreigners in a strange land. One of the first sentences I wrote in my new home was a simple sound bite that summed up exactly how I was feeling, “Moving is for madmen.” And it is. Imagine packing up your home, moving hundreds of miles away and unpacking it again in a new place where you don’t know a soul.
But that is just the first layer of the picture because it was so much more than what I just described. We were leaving everyone and everything we knew for places unknown. Our friends, family members, co-workers and acquaintances kept telling us we were crazy. Some were blunt and told us we were absolutely foolish. Others were more subtle and asked many questions in order to decipher the mystery behind our plan to move our family. And in the face of so much adversity, we held firm; God had a plan.
It wasn’t a simple plan. Stephanie and I sat up many nights and worried. What are we going to do for work? What about the schools for the kids? What about the people? How would we react to the culture shock? What about our friends? What about our family? What about our church? And so on and so on and so on. We didn’t always have the answer but one thing was for sure, we didn’t enter into our decision lightly. We would be liars if we told you that we didn’t worry about what would happen after we moved, because we did. But in the end, we took a leap of faith and we went.
Flash forward nineteen months to six o’clock on Super Bowl Sunday and that’s when God tapped me on the shoulder and said, “Revel in this moment. I made it just for you.” And I did. I felt the gravity of the last nineteen months; the hills, the valleys and every moment in between. And I reveled in it. I am proud of what we have accomplished. My wife has a great job that understands the work life balance. My children are happier than they have ever been. And filling that room before me were people we have come to know as family. Our house has become a home filled with love, blessings, stories and marvelous moments like the two mentioned above that will live on in my heart forever.
Nineteen months ago, I knew God had a plan. Sunday He showed me the results of the first part of his plan. He took care of my biggest fear first; my family. He filled our home with wonderful people who have had an amazing impact on our lives. And He reminded me of a similar moment sixteen years ago when Stephanie and I left Connecticut for a new place where we didn’t know a soul. And that story turned out to be an amazing chapter in our lives as we met some incredible people who will be in our family forever, regardless of the miles between us.
So yes, it is true! “Moving is for mad men.” But if I had never once moved, I wouldn’t have met all of you. Thank you, Lord, for making me crazy enough to follow the “road less traveled” to places unknown. It truly “has made all the difference!”