It's been a blur, these last few days.
My husband's new job in Montana started today and instead of enjoying Easter, taking our time, and meeting him there in a week or so, we decided to go as a family.
Stick together. Power it out. Drive for two and a half days. Make memories.
But the last minute change in plans called for flexibility and letting go of some popular family traditions. I ached to let go of the extended family celebration and Easter service we enjoy every year. Also I had to let go of the things I love to do with my kids like dye eggs, make "He is risen! rolls," and walk through our set of plastic Resurrection Eggs that tell the story of the cross.
Good thing Easter is not confined to any tradition but one: remembering that Jesus died and rose again so that we could be reconciled to Him. And this celebration requires no plastic grass, no fancy dresses, no mixing bowls.
As for the kids' favorite traditions, we did our best. We called it "mobile Easter" and they chose treats from the trunk every couple hours all weekend (most of which served to entertain them in the car; multi-function giving at its finest).
First it was buildings and then cactus and then farmland and then mountains.
We climbed the country in our Volvo, pulling some suitcases and the few things that didn't make it into the moving van.
Callahan, our 14 year old dachshund, rode drowsily in the trunk, and was lifted out every few hundred miles to sniff a new patch of grass.
After several tanks of gas, we finally spied the boundary marking the edge of our new home state. The moment needed to be documented; and on advice of a friend, we let Montana know that we had arrived.
They may not have known we were coming, but God did. In fact, He went first, He paved our way.
We arrived in Montana on Easter Sunday. This wasn't ever our plan. But I know it was His. (We are sometimes reluctant travelers; He is so patient to show us His story). And I don't believe for a second this date of our arrival is a coincidence. If reading the Bible tells us anything, it's that God loves Him some symbolism.
Rebirth, indeed. We get it, Lord.
And went we drove by our soon to be home, He blessed my children with their favorite thing at the edge of the neighborhood.
He blessed my husband with his favorite thing across the street (the view of breathtaking, nearby mountain peaks).
As for me, the things that bless me most are not always visible, but I know I'll find them soon.
Having hopeful expectation is how I understand what it means to walk in faith. As best I can, it's about keeping my eyes wide open, on the lookout for His surprises and His work.
It's a little like an egg hunt.
Except each one you find is golden.