He wants my heart, no matter where I find my mission field or what He shows my mission to be.
Driving to work and seeing all the beautiful green, I sometimes get a strange feeling of “Where am I? Am I really here?” My family and I have made it through our first year here in Louisville this past May. We moved here from Magna, Utah. Yes, a big move.
But I am no stranger to moving–even moving far distances. Shortly after Ken and I were married, we moved from our hometown Bakersfield, California to Cheyenne, Wyoming. After only living there nine months, we moved overseas to Duren, Germany. Three years later, we moved back to the states to Clearfield, Utah. We lived in Utah two years (moving three times during that time) and then moved back to our hometown in California. Yet, that was only for a short time as well.
After six years, we sold practically everything we had and packed up what was left and headed to Clarksville, Indiana. We lived there four years while Ken was going to The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. After that we headed back west to Tooele, Utah; we settled there for the next seven years with only a couple of moves within that area. Finally, we made another cross country trip to Louisville. Whew! Tired yet? I am just thinking about all those moves.
So many moves required so many changes. But I have to say this last move was the hardest for me, even harder than moving overseas. It wasn’t hard as far as travel, or accepting where we were going to live, but it was spiritually harder. This last move had me pulled in two different directions. Ken and I, really our entire family, had been involved in a full-time church planting ministry in Utah. I was also working full-time the whole time we were there. I was stretched pretty thin, but I had formed great friendships, had been able to see new believers in Christ grow in their faith, and I had seen mature believers start sharing their faith boldly.
Yet, with all of this I felt like I wasn’t doing enough or showing enough results. It was a terrible feeling to not be able to show others what I was seeing. We didn’t have many people come to our services or events that we planned for our community. It was discouraging because I knew there were so many people that needed to hear the gospel. I truly felt the weight so heavy on my shoulders. It was robbing me of the joy I had once felt in this ministry. I knew this was not what God wanted for me or for my family. It was a very challenging time. After much prayer and consideration, we left Utah and our ministry behind. We left dear friends.
Moving to Louisville to hold my grandchildren in my arms again has been such a blessing. This move had been wonderful, but it was also a transition from full time ministry. I felt like part of me, the responsibility for the church and mission was missing, as I sat in church watching others setting up and tearing down. It has been very hard feeling both joy to be with my family and sadness to be away from my church family and mission field.
But God! He has really been beside me in all of this. In this move, He has blessed me and my family. We moved out here in faith without jobs, and God blessed me with a wonderful job as Epilepsy Coordinator at Norton Neurology working with Dr. Gabriel Martz. I have learned so much in this new position and love that it is a job where I can see the absolute miracle of God’s creation in the way He has created the human brain. I am so thankful that He also continues to give physicians the knowledge to treat epilepsy. God even blessed us with a home on my daughter’s street in a lovely neighborhood only ten minutes from my office.
God has also brought me back to music. Before moving to Utah being in church choirs had always been such a wonderful part of my worship. I have been blessed to lead children’s worship once a month and Wednesday nights. Learning the children’s music and sharing it with them is so much fun and seeing the kids sing and praise God is really awesome.
God has used this time to bring me back to a real closeness with Him. I am again at His feet like Mary in Luke 10:38-42, asking Him to heal my heart and asking Him what He wants from this time in my life. It is not okay to be busy, busy, busy, or doing, doing, doing like Martha. In Utah I was overloaded with busy work and not allowing myself to rest in His love. I saw only the things that were going wrong instead of what was going right. It is so easy to see what you think are failures in your life, rather than focus on the blessings you have right in front of your eyes. I don’t know what God has in store for me, but I know He is with me. I know that He loves me. I don’t have to feel like I have failed Him. By loving Him and drawing closer to Him, I do not fail Him. That is what He truly wants.
He wants my heart, no matter where I find my mission field or what He shows my mission to be. He has also taught me that I don’t have to be in a full time mission to do his work. I just have to wait on Him to show me what He wants me to learn. Wherever He leads us to live, there will be ways to serve.
Alma and her husband Ken moved to Louisville in May 2015. They have 3 children and 3 grandchildren. They are originally from Bakersfield, California. Ken served 6 years in the Air Force. After serving in the military Ken went back to school after being called into ministry. They served in full time ministry in Utah before moving here. Alma loves studying the word of God, spending time with her family, bible art journaling, sci-fi movies, listening to podcasts, apologetics and she recently wrote a 15 day devotional for her family and friends.