Based on some of the comments and emails I received after posting about the year God told us nothing but “no” there are folks out there who wonder how the story ended. Well, it ended here

This is Owosso, Michigan. Unlikeliest of destinations. Corn fields as far as the eye can see and enough farm equipment that my son would soon be able to identify the difference between a “tractor” and a “combine.” Owosso opened its arms to us and I crawled in, lay down and died a little.

The loss of homeland and family felt like a physical wound. I bled; I cried. And for months after the move I felt disorientated and disconnected. I did not sense God in it at all. I walked forward in blind faith, stumbling over myself and my regret.

That was one of the most difficult parts of the process. Before we left South Africa, many well meaning Christians around us had constantly implied that if we just had enough faith it would all work out as we prayed it would. It made me start to ask the hard questions.

  • But what if it doesn’t work out?
  • What does that say about how God loves me compared to how God loves you (you who seemingly have your heart’s desire).

And after months of pleading prayer that yielded zero results, it was a bitter pill to hear others casually say, “Oh, well, we should just pray for you then.” As if their prayers carried more weight than ours. As if they had God’s ear and we did not.

It took a long, long time (and much wailing and gnashing of teeth) to pack it in and quit my homeland. Because no amount of prayer – by us or others – ended in the answer we were hoping for.

So, we said good-bye.

We watched as my little brother barreled through security at the airport to give my son one last, desperate hug.

We traveled 28 hours.

And we arrived in Owosso, Michigan.

That’s where I thought the story ended. But, you know already that was – instead – a surprise beginning. And I’m enjoying unpacking it with you all.

But, much like the slow and steady process of making chaos out of of a suitcase that is busting at the seams, it is better done in stages.

So, please come back tomorrow. I hope to unpack a few more pieces with you then.


Click here to keep reading part 3.