It's hard to believe, but Chad & I have been married nine years today. Neither one of us would have been able to predict what has happened in the last nine years. Chad was going to be a farmer, & I his farmin' wife. He had 3 years of University to finish when we got married, we actually moved out onto the farm after a year of living in town, & life was good. We thought we'd wait until he was finished school before we started having kids b/c it was easier that way & I wasn't allowed to work for the first year & 1/2 b/c of immigration laws.
After he finished his Bachelor's degree, we felt that God was calling us to something different for awhile, but figured we'd still eventually come back to the farm. Chad's interests were in Economics & Philosophy, so we kind of put God to the test & applied to the only 2 schools in the world that had combined Master degree programs, figuring Chad wouldn't make it into them..... He got into both. One at Erasmus University in Rotterdam, Netherlands, & the other at the London School of Economics in London, England. After much deliberation, we decided to go to London & spent the next 14 months in England.
Without having many connections over there, we quickly learned to rely on God. We had no place to live after the first 6 weeks, housing was expensive, & I was only able to get a part-time job b/c of the working culture over there. One night after a church service, Chad happened to speak to a visitor from just outside of the city, who was enamoured w/ Canada & they got to chatting about out housing situation. Without even checking w/ his wife, he invited us to come & live w/ them!
We took them up on the offer b/c we didn't really have any other viable options at that time & we quickly became part of their family. They made us feel very welcomed & really showed us God's love during the next year.
At the end of Chad's Master's program we had two options for our future:
1. Chad was offered a PhD position in Logic at King's University College, London, which would basically take 2-3 years & lead to him becoming a professor.
2. We could go back to the farm in Alberta as we had planned.
Neither option really seemed to be what we were supposed to do, so one night, Chad asked God to tell him where we were supposed to go & God laid it on his heart to go into the ministry. Not exactly what we had in mind, but God had really been working in our lives through the family we were living with & made it possible for us to see it as a possibility (but it was still totally out of the blue). At this point we had been married 4 years & Chad had changed his major at least 4 times, so I don't think I really thought he'd end up as a minister. I still figured it would lead to something else, since that seemed to be the pattern.
Now, here we are, married 9 years, expecting our 2nd child next month & Chad's taking his first call as a minister! We figured we'd have 3-4 kids by now, live at the farm/feedlot, & we'd be established in life, but instead we are just starting out! Ten years after Chad's highschool graduation, he's taking his first job w/ benefits!
It has really taught us that you can't foresee the future, only God knows where He's going to take you & you have to trust Him at every turn. That year we spent in England was one of the best we've had b/c it taught us to depend on eachother & rely on God. For the first 6 weeks we were there I earned £198/week, & our rent was £200/week. We were using money we had saved from home in Canada for our food, but the exchange rate was C$2.50 = £1.00, so to conserve our resources we were sharing a can of frank&beans for dinner, or Spaghetti-Os, or a package of Raman Noodles.... Times were lean, but we had the best time walking around together exploring the big city in our cowboy boots & God brought us to a great place b/c we trusted Him.