God’s calling may mean a move out of your comfort zone and into the unknown. Having moved over 35 times in our 47 years of marriage I think I know a little bit about moving & adjusting.
The move itself is not the problem, it’s what happens after the excitement of new beginnings is past and the dust settles. At first, nothing seems right. You want it to be right, but stasis is gone. The kids have no friends. The phone never rings. Your husband is gone all day and works most of the night. You are either alone, or your husband has taken up residence at the dining room table. You don’t even know where to shop for food, or where everything is in the store. The Feng Shui is off. Call it what you want, but you’ve definitely come down from the mountain of enthusiasm and are now faced with the reality of the changes you’ve made.
You, as Mom, can make a huge difference in shaping your children’s attitudes. Kids are very sensitive to their moms and will reflect exactly how you feel. Longing for the past, comparing everything with the way things used to be, crying all the time and criticizing your new home will make for a very difficult adjustment. Who wants this? Certainly not you, who are attempting to do the will of God by fulfilling the Great Commission.
How you deal with your own emotions is the subject of another article. This time I’d like to focus on your children and how the move affects them. The younger the children, the easier it is on them. If you’re excited, they’re excited. Older children have a tougher time of it. If it’s at all possible, I’d hesitate making a move while they are in high school. We moved while our kids were in high school and it was hard but they did just fine.
Let me pass on a few things I’ve learned along the way:
- Talk to your children about why you’re moving. Explain to them that God has opened a new and exciting door for the entire family. And both you and their Father feel led to go through it. It’s important that Dad not be made out to be the sole reason for the move.
- In order to help your children’s attitudes about moving, approach moving as a great adventure. Point out the benefits of moving by emphasizing the world view or national view that they will have.
- When we moved to a new place, I initially I spent more time with the. As they adjusted to their schools, made some new friends, joined clubs, etc., I was not needed as much.
- Pray with them about making new friends. Sometimes it takes a while, but God has the perfect friend out there for them.
- Stay in the Word. No matter how busy you are, stay in the Word. Satan is always looking for opportunities to stir up trouble, and the Word of God always puts things into perspective.
- Cultural differences do matter – take time to consider how to prepare your children to deal with them. A California “Yeah,” doesn’t quite cut it where a “Yes, Sir,” is expected.
God bless as you press on to the high calling of Christ Jesus. He is able!