Tag Archives: moving

In the fourth grade I wrote a darn-good paper about the Spanish conquest of Mexico and Central America. The introduction hooked the reader, Mrs. Ochoa—I still remember her name— and the writing—if I do say so myself—was excellent. I included colorful hand-drawn maps and illustrations, and my bibliography correctly included all my sources.

Definitely an A + paper.

So, I was really, really disappointed when the teacher gave me a B+. She didn’t even tell me why it wasn’t an A paper. All of her comments were positive. But, apparently, my best was not good enough.

That’s the same disappointment I felt these last couple of weeks when we arranged for the biggest truck to move our belongings from Colorado to the state of Washington.

We hired professionals to load the truck and…

the truck wasn’t big enough.

Even though we’d spent months donating stuff, selling stuff, throwing out stuff.

I felt like a failure. My best efforts at organizing were not good enough.

For all my talk about down-sizing, and boasting about how many books, boxes of music, and pieces of furniture we’d given away…

and how confident I felt that our next move (this move) would be a breeze…

I realized that I have a problem with stuff.

After delivering our first load of belongings, Bruce and I had to fly back to Colorado, pick up another, smaller moving truck, and finish packing the rest of our stuff.

“Never again,” Bruce said. I nodded in total agreement.

After we finish unpacking, we took a good look at the things we probably could have dispensed with before the move. Why did I move a bench, a table, some artwork that I had no intention of putting in the new house?

And I still have way too many books.

Bruce and I are extremely neat people. We’re not hoarders. When you step into our house, you see a neat and organized house.

So I asked myself this question: when I leave one house and move to another, do I take the old house with me, too?

Of course not.

So I’ve come up with a new rule. Anything new that comes into our house? Something old has to go OUT of the house.

I sometimes wonder if, back in the fourth grade, Mrs. Ochoa gave me a B+ because my paper had TOO much information stuffed inside that term paper!


Bruce and I are old hats at moving. Because of the particular industry he works in, we’ve moved several times: Michigan, Illinois, Colorado, northern California, Colorado, southern California, Colorado. And now, the northwest.

Going forward, checking behind
Going forward, checking behind

If you’re the adventurous type—which I am—then you might find several aspects of a new place exciting:

  • New areas to explore while driving, hiking, walking.
  • New restaurants, shops, other places of business. (Oh, if we had the time and you were willing to listen, could I tell you stories about my explorations!)
  • New local culture.
  • New friends.
  • New house. (New neighbors)
  • And a new church.

But it’s hard to say goodbye to familiar and comfortable places. Hard to say goodbye to friends. It’s hard to realize that I won’t see my family quite as often.

In every new exploration there are always two viewpoints we need to continually assume:

  1. Looking forward…
  2. While checking behind.

As I travel forward, what have I learned from my past that will help me negotiate the suspense of a new place?

  • Surely, the advice of friends over the years will help me when I forge new relationships.
  • The ministries I have participated in during the past forty years will lead me to new areas of service at my new church.
  • The confidence I have gained over the years as I have taught, performed, written, spoken, participated, helped, counseled, listened…

will accompany me as I open new doors.

It’s a little scary facing the unknown of a new town and a new state.

But for the past few months my greatest prayer for my husband and for me has been: “Lord, please prepare our path. Please guide us to every new friend and every new situation.”

Knowing the Lord is surrounding us and will guide us is the ultimate comfort.

I’m trusting Him for the next great adventure!

“Trust in the Lord with all you heart and lean not on your own understanding;

in all your ways submit to Him, and he will make our paths straight.” (Prov. 3: 5,6 NIV Bible)

A Simple Move?

Our beautiful Estes Park house has sold. We’re packing up out things for a move down to south Denver.

We’ve ordered boxes and wrapping sheets, bubble wrap, tape.

We’ve made all the necessary small repairs, spackled all the holes where our family photos once hung, reserved a moving truck.

I was thinking the other day how complicated it is nowadays to move.

Wouldn’t it be great to just pull up stakes—literally—like Abraham and move on out?

But then I opened to Genesis and read about how wealthy Abraham was. Wealth in those ancient days was measured in livestock, of which Abraham had plenty.

It wasn’t a simple affair to move. Abraham had to consider the needs of the household members: wife, children, servants, tents and supplies.

He also had to consider how to move thousands of animals to places along the way where there was food and water and shelter. Someone had to go on ahead and scout appropriate areas. And Abraham would have had to get permission to move his herds and people across someone else’s land.

There were tribal laws to obey, treaties to make, tolls to pay. And his servants and hired workers would also have had to be able to defend themselves in case some hostile tribe decided to attack.

There were no Marriotts along the way. No comfy beds and clean bathrooms where Sarah could shower away the day’s dusty, dirty, sun-scorching move.

What faith on Abraham’s part to make such a monumental move.

But the Netherton move is also a move of faith. We do not know the people in our new neighborhood. We haven’t yet found a new church. We’ll be renting for at least a year. That will feel strange. Bruce won’t be telecommuting anymore. We’ll both have to get used to his commute to work.

And we’ll miss our dear friends at church and our neighbors.

I’m praying that our move turns out to be a wonderful opportunity to follow the Lord through an uncharted (for us) future.

“So Abram moved his tents and went to live near the great trees of Mamre at Hebron, where he built an altar to the Lord.” (Gen. 13: 18 NIV Bible)