I woke up this morning knowing that today’s date is rather important. It marks the one year point that I’ve been in Mexico! I think back over the last year with awe. In fact, I just read my post from a year ago–I wanted to remind myself what was going on. Because I remember being a little scared and nervous, but Mama said today, “You didn’t act like it!” I was excited, but nervous.
I think of just one little year, and all that can be done. Of course, what I should say is “…all that can be done IF you let God do the leading.” One year ago, my life was so confusing. I had quit my job, moved home, and just gotten out of a relationship. I remember telling my ex’s sister, “I don’t need to date–I know what I want.” And goodness! I really did know what I wanted, but apparently God knew what I needed. I suppose that could be the lesson of the year for me: You may think you know what you want, but God knows what you need.
I was heartbroken when I didn’t get that job in Northern Virginia. I remember thinking, “Yes! God is leading me back to where I belong!” When it didn’t work out, it was hard for me to get my thoughts back in the right place. Then I got my first job in Mexico so speedy quick, there was NO denying that it wasn’t right.
My job was at times frustrating–but overall, stress free! I thought that maybe it was because I was in Chiapas at a developing school, but then I got the second job in Mexico. Both placements were in second grade–a grade I had previously taught three years in Northern Virginia. My students have been polar opposites, but I love teaching here! I work a normal schedule. I used to tell people that I worked an average of 60 hours a week, and they would stare like they couldn’t believe it! In the States, I would go to work early, stay at work late, work on Saturdays and in the evenings–and there was always something else to do. My summer “vacation” was full of professional development, and lists of things to do followed me everywhere. No more. I have a job. It is not my life. I love my job, but I now know that when I leave this job–another will be waiting around the corner.
And then, this morning Victor said, “Why didn’t your phone work?” He said this just out of the blue, and I couldn’t figure out what he was talking about. So I asked for clarification. “In San Cristobal…why didn’t your phone work?” The weekend we met, my phone broke. I tried calling him. He tried calling me. But it was on the blink. So, when I decided to go to San Cristobal, I had very little hope of actually seeing him again. But, I decided, “Well, if my phone works and I get to see him–Great! If not–I love San Cristobal!” Literally, the minute I walked out of the bus station, there he was. He had no clue that I was there–he had just gone for a walk. Man couldn’t orchestrate something so wonderful (except in Hollywood).
Life is strange. I spent the better part of my 27 years planning for the next day, week, month, year, etc. Not one of those plans worked out. When I quit planning, and FINALLY reached my breaking point, I remember praying emphatically, “No more. I don’t want to make any more decisions–please just lead me to where I belong.” And since then, I have received more than I could have ever planned for myself.
I am just reminded of the poem given to me from our brother workers upon my high school graduation. The second verse says,
Seeking God’s will cannot guarantee that you will not shed some tears, but they’ll not be the bitter, burning drops from misdirected years. His plan will never keep from you any pleasure that is worthwhile, so trust him to lead you on a way that holds peace in every mile.
So, yes, I think of myself a year ago, and I remember the fear–not the bravado. I could have never planned a year full of so many blessings. The other day, a stranger at the fabric store rubbed my belly and said, “Bendiciones! Bendiciones! Bendiciones!” It’s like saying, “Blessings! Blessings! Blessings!” I know that is what’s in store: more of God’s blessings for my little family’s life. And that’s my wish for you this New Year’s Eve…
Bendiciones! Bendiciones! Bendiciones!
Victor and I after meeting Sunday. No wonder why strangers rub the baby belly, eh?