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Are you available to God? Do you move when God says, "Move"?
God has done amazing things in the last 24 years since I’ve started following Him. I’ve written books, spoken internationally, hosted a radio broadcast, and we’ve opened our home to three kids through adoption.
I didn’t just wake up one day and say, “Here I am. God, use me.” I didn’t just clear my schedule and wait for God to show up. Rather, the steps toward my availability were a work in progress.
Being available to God sometimes means stepping away from status quo. For me, that once meant moving 1,000 miles away. Another time, it meant moving 2,000 miles.
In 1996, John and I were parents of three preschoolers. God placed a desire in our hearts to raise our children in a better place—namely, Montana. We’d talked about it with our friends, dreamt about it and hoped that someday it would come true. Then we decided to pray.
My husband and I got on our knees and prayed that if it was God’s desire, He would make it clear. John had just graduated from college, and I was raising three small children under the age of five.
We knew we’d be leaving our families, leaving our friends and leaving everything we knew. We had no jobs in Montana and no money to move; in fact, we’d never even been there before! Still, we had a call from God we couldn’t shake.
At the time, my husband sold computers on commission in a small store. He’d usually sell one to two a week. He went to work the next day after our joint prayer and sold 11 computers! It was enough to pay our current bills and enough to move and live on. It was the confirmation we’d been looking for.
So we did it. We packed up our three kids and moved. Our families thought we were crazy. We saw Kalispell for the first time as we drove in with our stuff.
We loved Montana, and we raised our three oldest kids there. I expected to live there for the rest of my life.
Then God started a stirring within my husband. John had a great job. He was making good money, but he was dissatisfied. His network administrator job had no impact on people’s everyday hearts and lives. He especially felt drawn to serving in a ministry that helped marriages and families.
John dared to tell me his dream, and I told him I’d pray.
I hardly had time to form the words on my lips when God presented us with the need for John’s skills at FamilyLife in Little Rock, Ark. Two months later, we were loading up and moving 2,000 miles away, and God is using my husband in amazing ways.
If you don’t believe in a big God with big dreams, there’s no use being available. But when you trust that fact—trust in God completely and trust in His dreams—then you can also trust Him to lead you to the right path.
“Watching the activity of God from a distance can never compare with the thrill of being fully involved in the Spirit’s active work,” say Henry and Mel Blackaby.
Seeing God at work and seeing what He has done with our lives when we were available makes me hungry for more. When we leave our comfort zones, we depend on God more. We see Him better.
You have to want God, not want to work for Him or simply learn about Him, in order for Him to use you. You have to be open to His work in your life. You have to be hungry for what only He can give you—a hope and a future. You have to be willing to give up everything to follow His plan.
And sometimes that means getting out your moving boxes.
Tricia Goyer has written more than 35 books, including both novels that delight and entertain readers and nonfiction titles that offer encouragement and hope. She has also published more than 500 articles in national publications such as Guideposts, Thriving Family, Proverbs 31, and HomeLife Magazine.