Saturday, October 31, 2009

Plan C Shows Up

While I was with Emily in Colorado two weeks ago we were trying to make some decisions about her future. It seemed like there were only two options:
A. Find a job and stay in Colorado (her preference)
B. Come back to Oregon (my deep-down wish)

Even while we beat the bushes looking for work for her and she tried to resign herself to coming back here, I kept telling her that I feel like God has a Plan C somewhere that we could all be happy with but I have no clue what it is.

I came back to Oregon and we made plans for Emily to come home. I had told Emily that 90% of finding a job is connections, which we have way more of here than in Colorado. In a vivid confirmation of this, the day after I came home I impulsively sent a facebook message to Tina H. who with her husband owns a bent-n-dent store in Lebanon and they're opening a new one in Albany before too long. I told her Emily would be in the area and looking for work. Fifteen minutes later she wrote back, "I called my husband and he said to tell you she's hired." That job should start in a month and a half, which incidentally works well with Plan C, but I didn't know that at the time.

Yesterday Paul flew to Colorado and today he and Emily are packing up her things and putting them in storage.

They had planned to fly back here on Monday.

Meanwhile, on Friday Emily read on Facebook that one of her friends was headed for SMBI (a Mennonite Bible school in Pennsylvania) for the second term. She wistfully told Paul that that was the term she was going to apply for, some months ago, but then she was too sick.

Here's how she describes the conversation:

Me: Man, you know how I was gonna apply to go to SMBI second term and then didn’t after all, cause I was so sick? I wish now I would have. It would have worked so perfectly. I’m done with my schoolwork and Annie and don’t have anything to do.

Dad: Well why don’t we call them in the morning and ask if they have any openings?

Me: Seriously?!!?

Dad: When does it start?

Me: Like, three days.

Dad: Oh. Well, I’ll call and see.

Next Morning

Dad: Do you have any openings?

Headmaster: actually, yes, we have one woman’s opening. Fax in your application.


I had to laugh when I heard this because I could just imagine the gleam in Paul's eye. Very few things make him as happy as organizing and planning, and to do it at the last minute to make an impossible dream come true, well that is just the cherry on top of a lot of whipped cream.

So he talked to Clifford Schrock the principal, who thought he knew Paul even though Paul doesn't think he knows him, but it's all good, and the principal's wife reads my stuff, so that's even better. Emz had all the forms on hand, so they filled out her part and faxed it in, and faxed the pastor's portion to Arlen K. Paul called his sister Barb and yes, she could pick Emily up at the airport and take her to SMBI. He had a free Southwest ticket stashed away so he found a flight for Emily from Denver to Pittsburgh on Sunday. And then he was able to change his own ticket to leave ten minutes after Emily because there was no reason for him to hang around Colorado by himself.

So this, I take it, was God's Plan C all along.

For a year and a half, up until just a few weeks ago, the bridges on 99E between Halsey and Harrisburg were all getting replaced, so at each one there was a motion-activated stoplight and only one lane of traffic. At night you would be driving along, with no other traffic in either direction, and way up ahead you could see the next red light. And you'd think, come on, just turn green and let me fly through. But no. It stayed red and stayed red, and then you'd slow down and slow down, and at the veeerrrryyyy last second, right when you were almost to a complete stop, the light would turn green.

Those lights always made me think of God. I have no idea why he likes to make us wait until the very very last second, but I guess the important thing is that the light does turn green.

In practical terms, the hardest thing about Emily going to Bible school right now is that they have to wear dresses and she always wears skirts and tops. So she'll probably be wearing some very formal dresses she's worn to weddings until I can whip out a few, unless there's someone out there that 's about 5-feet-6 and impossibly skinny that can loan her some.

And don't you agree with me that Emily has a very nice dad?

Quote of the Day:
"So I guess you were right, Mom. There really was an Option C."


  1. Wow! I just love stories like that. It just confirms that we have a very great God!! (who works through great people like Paul!!)

  2. Wow, how special she gets her wish!
    Praise God from whom ALL BLESSINGS flow!

  3. I am so glad that Emily is getting the desire of her heart. And yes, it seems that she does have a cool dad.
    -Priscilla Schrock

  4. This comment has been removed by the author.

  5. Indeed, Emily has a wonderful dad and an amazing Father! =) It'll be so interesting to see His plan unfold for her as time goes by. He wants us to be so thrifty with all our pain and tough times...never let them go to waste. And I have a feeling Em won't. (I deleted my previous comment because of a grievous spelling error. LOL)

  6. Amazing! Don't you like thinking about God having known all this and smiling on you as the plan unfolds?

  7. That kind of thing is so very exciting! God smiles while we're busy making plans. I'm so happy for Emily; I have goose bumps!

  8. What a lovely, lovely Plan C. I love the way God works!

  9. What a great God-story!

    I love the red-light/green-light analogy--good imagery and so oh-so-true that it almost hurts!

    -Anonymous Coward

  10. We're delighted to meet Emily here at SMBI. Yes, I "read your stuff" when I have time. :-) We'll try to take care of her while she's here. Feel free to call or write if you have questions.

  11. Great story! It's so fun and faith building when God leads like that!~Edith

  12. I'm so excited for you all! Plan C was the best of all!