Change Changes Everything!

Everything always changes, doesn’t? I mean no matter what we do or how we try to keep things going the same, something will always change somehow.

So many times change can be great! I loved when I changed from a girlfriend to a fiance  to and to a wife! A couple of weeks ago Sweets and I had the chance to get back to the States and Canada for some great family visiting. I was FINALLY able to change my name! I LOVED that change!

But while we were there, a number of other things also changed. Some not so good, some not so bad and some we are still unsure about!

Sweets’ wonderful grandfather was diagnosed with cancer the day – actually the MOMENT we arrived. (Literally we walked in the door the second the phone rang and the hospital CALLED to tell him he had cancer – I still can’t believe they did that over the phone!) Many things will have to change now.

About 5 days later Sweets was asked to go to Iowa to see about a job opportunity. (We were in MO, so it was about a 7 hour drive to IA) We were kind of in shock! This was not in the plan! We were set to stay in Japan 18 more months, save as much money as possible and THEN start looking for work for him closer to his home/family when we could pay cash for a car and closer to 50% down on a home. Leaving Japan now we will only have about 1/3 of the savings we hoped to have before leaving.

Needless to say we drove the 7 hours to IA, had a very intense interview for a pretty niche job opportunity and then we drove another 7 hours back discussing Gods hand in all of this and what He could possibly be up to!

Let me tell you I was glad to have those 7 hours! 🙂

So here we are, in a very difficult situation emotionally for both of us as we try to figure out the best steps to take next. Sweets has accepted the job offer and will be moving to IA right after Christmas. I on the other hand find myself in a VERY difficult situation that needs much prayer and only direction from the Lord.

Should I stay and fulfill my contract til March or leave with Sweets and be with my husband as he takes on this new responsibility in January?

To make it easier/further complicate matters I am Canadian and therefore need to wait for immigration clearance before I can move. This helps me to know that if it doesn’t happen before January then I can stay in Japan until it does. But then there’s the being apart for so long…

Alternatively I can go to IA with him for a month or two, then fly to Canada and stay with my family until the immigration process is cleared. This way its easier/cheaper for us to visit 1-2 times a month on weekends as we wait out the immigration. In Japan this will not be possible.

I go back and forth almost everyday! I love my students, and my work but I also want to be by the side of my husband at this very stressful/amazing time in his life. I want to be there when he comes home from work and help him get settled into the new life for at least a month or two before living apart…. I just really do not know whats best. Sometimes I think it is more selfish for me to stay in Japan and leave my husband. But other times when I think of the students, and the promises I made to them, their parents and my boss. Not to mention I do not think it is a good witness to break contract. I sometimes feel more selfish wanting to be with my husband rather than honour my word to complete the work when it gets hard because I miss my man….

Both sides are totally valid and depending on the view both would be honouring to the Lord and Biblically obedient!

So no matter how much I tried to keep our life the same (and I have been trying!) one call changed it all! Despite the trying I am in the process of life changes, but all the while learning that God is also in the process of changing ME.

In Sweets taking this new job, I am forced to face a lot of things about me that I know God has been pointing to, but I have been conveniently ignoring and rather working on the things I THINK I should work on first! (you know, the easier stuff!)

Change: For the good, the bad and the Glory of God! Bring it on!



A Husband’s Expectations

Do you ever wonder if a wife’s role in a marriage is more based on societal expectations more than truth and in some cases even more than your husbands expectations?

I do not know if this is right or true or even the case for most marriages, but I have expectations that  I have actually placed on myself. Things that I plan to do and expect to do for my husband once we are married (in 70 days!)

I have expressed many of these ideals to Sweets and surprisingly he had hardly thought about let alone expected most of what I told him I felt were my jobs after we married. (things like: cooking him breakfast every morning, making his lunch each day, learning new recipes to cook for him, and making sure that I have at least 2-3 dishes for dinner to name a few.)

I realize that some differences about Sweets may simply be that both of us have been single and living on our own in foreign countries for 7 years. His expectation in a wife may be a little different because of this.  But that aside, I still have these images in my mind about what a “good wife” looks like.  I wonder if this is typical for newly engaged women, women in general or if we simply do just take on the roles that society dictates makes us “good wives”?

I want to share something that I have read and maybe you can see what I mean. To be sure, I agree with everything I am about to quote. I am striving and working towards this goal. But Sweets disagrees and does not believe that all men have these same expectations on their wives – as women put on themselves and each other.

“I don’t care how liberated you are, when you are married there will always be two arenas that will ultimately be your responsibility: home and children. Even if you are the only one working and your husband stays at home to keep the house and tend the kids, you will still be expected to see that the heart of your home is a peaceful sanctuary – a source of contentment, acceptance, rejuvenation, nurturing, rest, and love for your family. On top of this, you will also be expected to be sexually appealing, a good cook, a great mother, and physically, emotionally and spiritually fit.” (The power of a Praying Wife, Stormie Omartian)

It’s a big job for us to take on. I am starting to REALLY see the benefit of the engagement time now! Only 70 days to get my act together?! 🙂