Ehh..I really don't know how to start this post. I know that when you are older, you'll understand the "why" behind our decisions, but I am hoping for now you'll grasp that we love you, and that God will never leave you or forsake you.
We have spent five years walking with the students and the families of Stone Church in Palos Heights, IL on their spiritual journeys. Parker, we moved here before you could even walk. In fact, you took your first steps in the foyer of the building on 127th and Ridgeland. Your best friends are at church, and you are very comfortable with the students and teachers. Kent, this is the only church you've been to. You were born here, and the Wee Kare rooms have been your second home. You too love the students at church, and look forward to interacting with them each week.
But, it is our time to move on to the next chapter of our lives. Maybe one day I'll sit and explain all of the details, but for now the particulars are not important. What is important is that we remain faithful to God, and to each other as family.
I'm sad to leave our dear friends here, but I know that God has mapped out our future, and because He loves us, our paths will bring us good as He gets glory.
Your dad and I are going to sit down and tell you both what is going to be happening, and at 5 and 3 years old, I am not sure of how much your will understand. You will understand that you'll be leaving your friends, and have to make new ones. You'll understand that you'll have new Rangers and Rainbows leaders, and that our new church will be in a different building. You'll understand that you'll go to a new school with new teachers and new friends. You'll understand that you'll be living in a different house. You'll understand that things will be different. I'm just not sure if you understand how much will change.
Kent, you are young enough to where you'll probably be able to transition fairly easy. Parker, I am more concerned about you, but you've really matured and grown, and have tried to go out of your comfort zone with people. I am confident that you'll both get acclimated quickly, and that this will make you more friendly, well adjusted, and flexible people.
I have to remind myself that God is your better parent, and He loves you more than we do. He holds your emotions and well being in his hands, and although you may seem delicate to me, He can make you stronger than I can imagine.
When we left Joliet, it was certainly bittersweet. We loved the students and the church body, but it had become clear that God wanted to stretch us and use us elsewhere. Leaving here feels the same way. But, when it's time, it's time. I hope to instill in you boys an anticipation to embrace what's ahead, rather than to lament what is behind.
How many times have I quoted Psalm 16:5 to you throughout these posts? Again, "He has assigned our portion and cup and has made our lot secure." My heavy heart is filled with joy when I read this. He has designated a plan for our lives, and our future is secure because we have placed it in his in His ever so capable hands.