The Next Move
Posted September 28, 2021 by Theresa Miller
Categories: Featured, Sister Post, Theresa
We left Pennsylvania out of necessity. I don’t remember shedding a tear, complaining, or even wondering about my dad who would remain. I was ten and scared. Our world had finally erupted and our lives were left in shambles. When an eruption occurs, all you can do is pick up the salvageable pieces and figure out how to rebuild again. That is what my mom did for my five sisters and me. She picked up the pieces and trusted God with her next move.
Picking Up the Pieces
My mom didn’t know where to go at first. She had no solid support in Pennsylvania. At least in New York, where she was born and raised, and where my three older sisters and I were born, she had a bit more support. So our trek to Wyoming began with a transition to upstate New York, living with supportive friends. This was before we even knew Wyoming existed on the map.
Five months we spent in New York, beginning the first month of the next school year there. It was long enough for me to make a couple of friends, whom I quickly designated as best friends. But we would leave them, too, without a second thought.
My mom knew we couldn’t live with friends forever, yet rebuilding our life in New York proved difficult. She had to trust God with that next move. At that time, another providential friend, who had moved to Wyoming for a cowboy, asserted Wyoming was a great place to raise six girls. She had even found a house for my mom to rent, if she wanted it. That was when my mom made her next move.
Within a weekend of me learning about this change, we had a moving truck at the house, and I had all of a day to put closure on my new school and newfound friends. I suppose I knew better than to hold onto our temporary life, so I exchanged addresses with my friends and said goodbye.
Our lives had felt unsettled for so long, I think my sisters and I would have done anything for the hope of life feeling semi-settled again. We drove 24 hours across the United States, after sending my two older sisters off by plane. Other than driving right on past a car burning in wild flames that was holding up traffic, and the hotel room that night, the next memory I have is driving down the one main road of Sheridan, Wyoming and pulling into the driveway of our new red house. The town was so different from where I had come from—sparse, wide open, and quiet comparatively. Yet I remember the sense that everything would be okay. And it was.
Rebuilding the Pieces
When I think about where I’ve been and where I am today, I am overcome with humble gratitude. Truly, when I consider how far I’ve come—not in miles, but from shambles to healing, growth, love, forgiveness, and a life lived fully—it is a messy, overflowing, on your face, “Thank you, Jesus!” kind of gratitude.
I’m grateful to have my mom, stepdad, all of my sisters and families, and the family my husband and I have built together here in Wyoming—the place I call home. Recently, a trip to Pennsylvania for the first time in thirty-five years blessed a couple of sisters and me. We visited old neighborhoods, church locations, schools, and friends we had forgotten. We spent this time, connecting pieces of our childhood to our adult life, with our dad.
Life isn’t perfect, and certainly wasn’t suddenly perfect once we arrived in Wyoming. But we have a God who sees us, has prepared a future for us, and works all things together for the good of those who love him. I would not be where I am today without his hand in the details of my life, his pursuit of my heart and healing, and my response to him through it all.
We may have left Pennsylvania out of necessity, yet trusting each next move has allowed God to rebuild the broken pieces of our lives far more abundantly than any of us could have imagined.
Friend, does your life feel in shambles? Know that God has better plans ahead for you. He has plans to prosper you, to give you hope and a future. His plans are always for your good, health, and deliverance, and a life lived abundantly in him. Will you trust him with your next move?