|My husband and I, Dawson City Yukon, 1978|
As I made our bed, the one my husband had constructed that week as a temporary place for us to lay our heads as we finished our eight-sided log home, I wondered how long we would live there. The still small voice that responded, “six years,” made my hands stop their tucking and smoothing. I did not recognize the voice of God at that moment, but for some reason I believed it. I peered out the window at the hayfield and hills around it and listened to the gurgling Klondike River that ran just beyond our door. Six years. Well. I purposed in my heart to enjoy every day of that time.
It was six years later when my husband came home after a hunting trip with our pastor. He was laughing as he came in the door and when I asked him why he shook his head and said. “Oh, that crazy Pastor Jack Sailor! He just told me he thinks I’m going to be a pastor someday.” I smiled. I knew it was true and I knew God was about to cause our world to turn upside down, once again.
But I had complete peace. God didn’t reveal all the details of what was about to happen, and it’s a good thing He didn’t or I likely would have tried to run, but I knew, as each step unfolded, that we had been called to go in an extraordinary direction by an extraordinary God.
We had only been believers in Christ for about two years. Our lives had already been turned upside down, the changes obvious to all. Now the road was narrowing even more, and the challenges just kept on coming as we made the decision to go to Bible College.
We had to come to terms with selling the house we had built with our own hands, giving it to God, not as a precious sacrifice on our part, but as something He had given us for a time and was now taking back so that He could give us something much more valuable– a life lived in service to Him.
We had only just gotten our heads and hearts around that hurdle when things started going awry. We bought an old station wagon and a tent trailer to make the 3,222 km. trip south with two young children and an aging husky dog, but shortly after we bought it the motor died. A wonderful mechanic friend came to our rescue, helped us find another motor, and installed it for us for free.
We had thought the house and property were sold but that fell through at the last minute. The new butcher in town asked if he could rent it, so we agreed, with a handshake but no lease signed. He backed out just after we’d mailed all our belongings away. Then a man who’d just had an amazing conversion to Christ told us he’d dreamed about living in our house and believed God wanted him to buy it – two days before we had to leave. Those are just a few of the details that should have shaken my world.
But I had extraordinary peace.
God had told me we’d live in that home for six years and it came to pass. He made it clear to us that He wanted us to go to a Bible college in Saskatchewan and even though my husband resisted that idea at first, I knew it would come to be. Things began to fall apart in many ways, but I just kept on packing.
That was thirty-five years ago, almost to the day. It has been an extraordinary path He set our feet, and our minds and hearts on, way back then. It hasn’t all been easy, by any means, but it has been a life I would not change for all the gold and silver in the world. His blessings have abounded, His grace evident at every turn and His mercy enough to send us to our knees over and over again, as He continued to teach us and grow us into His disciples. Flawed though we are, He continues that work.
Extraordinary directions. Extraordinary peace. Extraordinary God.
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