our moving story | part 3

Marian Parsonsa slice of life122 Comments

This is a continuation of a story, so you’ll want to check out PART ONE and PART TWO before you read this post.  Or else you’ll feel like you just walked in on a conversation.

I was surprisingly relaxed, waiting for the realtor to share her “you’re never going to believe this” news.  I really and truly, cross-my-heart, wanted what was God’s best for us and if this was a closed door, that was okay.  God had something better.

Well, despite our offer being contingent upon a job offer that wouldn’t come until July 14, if at all, the sellers accepted our offer.  Not only did they accept our offer, but they accepted it without any stipulations that their home would still be open to other offers.   It would be officially under contract.  We were completely shocked!

The one kicker was that Jeff (or one of us) needed to be there for the inspection.  Since we had lots of packing to do, that meant flying out to Rochester and back in a day!  As much as I wanted to see the house, I am eager to fall in love with most houses, so I thought it was best for Jeff to go.  He would be much more objective.

So, after our Myrtle Beach trip, Jeff hopped on a plane to see our house with specific instructions from me to take pictures of every little thing.  Open every drawer and cabinet door.  My exact words were, “You cannot possibly take too many pictures.”  I waited eagerly at home, caring for the boys and working on packing.  (Ha, I originally wrote that sentence as “packing and caring for the boys”, but that didn’t sound quite right!)

 Jeff texted me to report about the Rochester area, made the trip to Trader Joe’s to see how far it was from “our house”, told me about the endless fields of corn and soy, and how the sky went on forever.

He let me know when he arrived at the house and then…there was silence.  I was starting to get nervous.  Maybe his heart sank right when he walked in the door and we had just wasted money on an inspection and airline tickets for a home that only photographed well.  I pestered him a little and let him know I was about to crawl out of my skin with suspense.  He finally texted back with the reassuring news, “This is our house.”

The house was incredibly well built, had great bones, and was well cared for overall.  It’s ripe for us to add our personal touch.

So, I started to dream about a house that I had never seen and might never own.  I made the decision, though, that I was going to pack in faith.  I would only keep furniture that I thought would fit in that specific house and the rest would be sold.

With the inspection complete, we then had to decide if we were going to move ahead and invest in an appraisal or wait to do the appraisal until we had the job offer and certainly push back our potential closing date.  We decided we would go all in.  If you take a leap of faith, you want to make sure you don’t stop halfway over the precipice!

A couple of weeks later, it was time for our visit to the church.  We decided to drive out to Rochester, so we could experience the trip from PA and have lots of time to talk through nerves in the car.  We also kind of like road trips!

The drive in was…eventful.  One of the boys was carsick (or something-sick) all the way through Ohio, so we seriously stopped at every rest stop on the Ohio turnpike.  There were major delays in Chicago, so we had to reroute ourselves a couple of times.  And, as we were driving across the Mississippi into Minnesota, there were violent thunderstorms that included hail and tornados.  At one point, we were both receiving weather alerts on our phones to “seek shelter immediately”.  We rerouted ourselves again to drive around the storms and away from the charcoal sky.

Thankfully, the car trip was not foreshadowing.  It was just a bumpy road that lead to an amazing weekend in a place we hoped to soon call home.  Rochester was love at first sight for me.  I will have enough landscape painting inspiration to fill endless pages in watercolor journals.  The rolling green of the farm fields and the expanse of sky suits me perfectly.

The boys and I finally had a chance to see our house, too.  My stomach flipped when I saw sold sign in the yard.  That’s for us!

The boys went racing up and down the steps and claiming bedrooms.  I was walking through the house, arranging furniture in my head.  Something about me, is that I tend to look angry when I’m arranging furniture in my head.  I guess I take it seriously!  I tried to be mindful of that, so Jeff and/or the realtor didn’t think I was disappointed about something as I stood in a room for several minutes, stone-faced.

I meandered to the backyard and found one of the best surprises.  Upon closer inspection, I realized two of the trees planted in the back were cherry trees, loaded with fruit.  Cherry trees!?  Are you kidding me?!  I plucked some off and revealed them to Jeff.  He knows that cherries are my favorite and I eagerly wait each summer for them to show up at the grocery store.  It was a like a little gift just for me.


We also looked at schools for the boys and drove by the Mayo Clinic to see how far of a drive it would be to the Pediatric Endocrinologist.

And the more we drove around Rochester, the more I loved it.  Lots of great shopping, restaurants, parks, all just a few minutes away.  (Oh, and I’ve already scoped out their craigslist and we’re good to go!)

But, as great as the area is, it’s the people who drew us in.  Through the entire weekend, we were welcomed in as old friends.  Meetings were filled with laughter and good-natured ribbing right alongside honest conversations that got to the heart of a matter.  And after each meeting and event, Jeff and I left, smiling at each other, silently affirming what the other knew.  This is it.

 In that short time, we had a taste of what our lives could be like as a part of that church and community and everything about it felt right.

On the way home, every conversation about the church, the house, the area, was tempered with the fact that it was all still up in the air.  The word “if” was used very liberally in our house during this season of unknown.  In our gut, we felt like it was going to happen, but it was still an “if”.

Back at home, we finished packing up our PA home and loaded the trucks.  Given that we had nothing in the house, we took the time to visit Jeff’s parents in Raleigh and then booked the guest rooms at my parent’s house in Gettysburg.  We closed on our PA house on July 13, the same day we were expecting to receive the job offer.  Closing happened in the morning without a hitch and Jeff and I tried to occupy ourselves, so we didn’t go nuts waiting for the phone call.

We knew it would come later in the evening, so after we put the boys to bed, we sat in chairs out on my parent’s driveway.  The sun had set, but it was still hot and sticky outside.  Sometimes we waited in silence.  Sometimes we talked.  Sometimes we prayed.  We both knew this phone call would set an entire chain of events in motion.  Either we would be moving to Rochester or…  Well, that was the scary part.  We really didn’t know.  There was no plan B.  I know it sounds crazy!  We kept acknowledging the fact we were crazy, but any time we even talked about creating a plan B, neither of us were at peace about it.  Through the entire journey, we felt like God was asking us to take a step of faith, but He gave us gifts of encouragement all along the way, like our house selling without even putting it up for sale, the unexpected acceptance of the offer on the MN house, and so many affirming conversations.

It was still nail-biter as we waited.

The thick air was cut by Jeff’s cell phone ringing.  It was the call we had been waiting for.  Jeff picked up and, within seconds, gave me a thumbs up.  I felt ever muscle in my body relax and I couldn’t contain my smile.  We’re moving to Minnesota.

The past few months have felt a little like we were setting up a line of dominos and then knocking them down in totally the wrong order.  But the first and most important domino was finally knocked down and then it didn’t seem to matter that the others had fallen out of turn.

It could’ve all turned out differently…

But it didn’t.

The Dash & Albert Rug Design Competition is in the final days of voting!  If you have an Instagram account, hop on over and vote for your favorites!  You can vote just by “liking” or double-clicking on the pictures of the ones you like in Instagram.  These three are my rug designs…

Click the links below to vote (in the order shown in the picture above)…

Rug # 1  |  Rug #2  |  Rug #3

Dash & Albert will produce the top 10 winning designs, so that’s pretty exciting stuff!  Thanks for taking the time to vote.

our moving story | part 3

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122 Comments on “our moving story | part 3”

  1. Marian,
    Thank you for sharing your current life experience … this is more than just words, expressions, emotions … this is a ‘testimony’ to me, in a time most needed!
    BLESSED will you be where you go in and where you go out.

    1. Yes, it truly is a testimony. I sometimes struggle with how much of my personal life to share, but this story was just too good to not share. I do hope it’s an encouragement to others! 🙂

  2. My eyes were tearing up, reading this. You have a wonderful story to tell, and you tell it well. This will be another of those “God stories” that you recount many times as the years go by, to tell of God’s goodness. So happy for you!

  3. So happy for you all! Thank you for sharing your emotions and faith in it—-we have experienced moves like yours as well, with faith in His provision and yet it’s still a nail-biting feeling when we have to wait! So glad that you all are excited, thrilled and happy as you’re soon to be moving into Your House. !! Thank you for sharing it with us. It’s been a blessing.

  4. I can’t help but chime in here, as I’ve been in on this story from a different perspective for many months now. We became interested in “Mr. Mustard Seed” (a.k.a. Jeff) via his resume and his obvious passion for the type of ministry position we’ve had open for the last year at our church. Early on Jeff mentioned Marian’s business and blog, which we neglected to check out for several weeks until we were well into the phone interview process.

    Then one day I looked her up. “What was that name again? Miss Mustard Seed?”

    I. Had. No. Idea!

    It has been so interesting (and a bit strange) checking in on Marian’s life…her skills, passions, and most of all her heart through her “on-line” presence. It was especially weird seeing this massive group of supportive, loving, caring blog followers just hoping and praying she’d land somewhere near them, knowing there was going to be some disappointment from other, distant parts of the country when and if this Rochester opportunity came together. We ALL were waiting patiently for the pieces to finally (divinely) fall into place.

    Watching it unfold, both on-line AND behind the scenes, has been an exercise in faith. God is so good! We are looking forward to a fruitful ministry together in our community with this wonderful family. Love them all already – even the dog!

    A big thanks to all the Midwestern and Minnesota “Miss Mustard Seed” followers whose words have been SO positive about our little corner of the world. You’ve done an even better job selling our area than we did (we disclosed the snow/cold/long winters each time we talked to them, just to be sure they knew what they were getting into). It’s been awesome to see EVERYONE’S excitement for them and encouraging words to them as they step out in faith! Onward!…

    1. How neat to see this response on here after following this story! And, as an Iowan, I can’t help but chuckle at the full disclosure of our harsh winters in these parts. But I like to think of it in this way – you can’t truly appreciate the beauty of new life in spring, the twinkling fireflies of summer, or the endless color of fall if you don’t go through the harsh, seemingly endless at times, winters here in the heartland. You are obviously getting a wonderful family in your community – best wishes to everyone!

  5. Ah! So glad you posted part 3 tonight! I just read part 2 this morning, and it was such a cliff-hanger! 🙂 I was especially touched by this sentence: “The boys went racing up and down the steps and claiming bedrooms.” I know it may sound like a little statement, made just to give a picture of the activity, but it touched my heart because I am imagining my own boys doing that same thing one of these days when we either buy a new house or build one. I can’t wait to hear more about your journey, and I’m impressed you have such clarity about all of this since it’s only been a few days since your received the official call. I’m so happy for you all!

  6. The most amazing word keeps popping into my head as I’ve read this nail biter story these past few days and that is “love”. The love your family has for each other, the love your followers have for you, the love you have for life and a ministry and creating a comfortable and beautiful home for your family… it just knocks me over. I can’t wait to see pictures and I can’t wait to hear more stories of how everyone is adjusting…. is it wrong to be so anxious for a family and their sweet dog…. all of whom I’ve never met!

  7. Marian, what an incredible story about stepping out in faith! I want to share it with my Bible study group, if I can figure out how to condense it down so it’s easy to follow for those who aren’t familiar with your blog. I was one of those readers who was hoping you’d move closer to my area – I live in California. We’ll, you did move closer…. but not exactly close enough that I can sign up for a workshop. 🙁
    It’s been exciting seeing everything unfold and reading about how God revealed His plan to you and Jeff. Can’t wait to learn more about your new home!

  8. I got tears reading your post. Our God, is the master of import to us details. I love how He blesses us with little details, that say I heard your pray, I see you, I was really listening and I’m going to bless you with more then you dreamed for yourself. So glad for your family that you have found a church and a community with open arms that you can be real with as well as do life and a God together.

    Will be waiting in anticipation for photos of the new house. Oh, you mentioned Craig’s list was good, but no mention of antique shops. Hope they have lots of good ones, to help you fill up the new house. Have a lovely week.

  9. Oh my goodness, what a whirlwind story of this chapter of your life and family’s! It has been so fun, and nail biting, and exciting reading each post, like I’m reading a friend’s life story. Following your blog for years, seeing your new home, projects, new city, well, we can hardly wait. Congratulations to your husband, you, and your children. Blessings for your family as you begin this new life…

  10. So excited for you All! Congrats on everything! I’m looking forward to hearing about ur new journeys, where God and life have taken you!

  11. Let me know if/when you want to go to the Mall of America! My daughter knows it like the back of her hand and we’ll take you for a tour. There are Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, Ikea very near as well. You are far enough away from the Twin Cities to be “in the country”, yet close enough that a day trip is totally worth it. I wish you all a very happy life here in good old MN!

  12. Hallelujah!! Had to check and find out what happened. What a wonderful story! Big hug and Blessings! Thank you, God.

  13. I have so enjoyed reading your moving series! So happy for you and your family – everything seems to be working out beautifully.

  14. Wow, you have an amazing amount of faith. Sometimes things work out like that. I know when I was house hunting, everything in my price range was a major fixer upper. Someone suggested I try an auction. Not knowing anything about them, I went and look at a house with an auctioneer. He explained how it worked and told me that sometimes houses go for way above market value and sometimes way below. When I walked into the house I knew it was the “one” and the auction was on my birthday!! The day of the auction I wanted to tell everyone not to bid and let me have it for my birthday. I wanted it so bad. Turns out I won the action going only $2,000 over my budget. I got it well below market value. Sometimes we all take a leap of faith and enjoy the blessings.

  15. So happy you posted part 3 of your journey this morning. I went to bed reading part 2 but I had a feeling everything would work in your favor. I’m a little sad to see you leave Pa but so happy for you and your family that all the dominos fell into place. I can’t wait to see your new house and follow along on this next chapter of your life. Many blessings to you and your family.

  16. Oh Marian !! This is a fabulous God story,, which I’m sure many of us need to hear,, I was touched by the boys claiming their bedrooms,,, making the new place “home” to them already,, and the Cherry Trees in the yard …. just for you,,, Such an intimate expression of Gods personal love for us,,, I cannot say it enough: Many blessing’s to you and the fam.. Cant wait to see what Craigslist has to offer you !!, 🙂

  17. What is your secret to managing all the details of so many aspects of life: the medical needs of your son, school, activities and sports for the boys, your multifaceted business, a big move and house hunt, and time for personal reflection and creativity?
    I’m in awe – and if there are some teachable tips for keeping all the balls in the air – please share!

    1. Congratulations Marian and Family!! I hope your parents follow you.
      I’d been absolutely interested in your stories. Can’t wait to see your new house.
      And I second Mary E, it would be very handy to me to know tips about doing it all.

  18. …but wait, where are the pictures? I have been dying to see pictures. What a great story, my heart was racing reading this part. You were so close to me in PA, only an eight hour drive and i never made it to the studio : ( and now 16 hours, good thing i like road trips too. Congratulations Marion, i am soooo excited for tomorrow i hope there is a part 4

  19. Marion,
    Been an avid reader of yours for years- this has moved my heart. We were in CA, three kids and a rich life. Then 9/11. Paradigm shift. With prayer, faith and a whole lot of nerves we packed the house in a truck, said goodbye to friends, a beloved church family and drove to mpls. Accepted a job offer when we were halfway to MN (another leap of faith) and we were settled in Minneapolis by Thanksgiving. God blesses those that have Faith in His plans and trust He will care for you. Matt 6:31-33. Welcome to MN!

  20. Thank you SO MUCH for sharing these things with us all! I love seeing how God works everything for the good for those He loves. I can literally feel your nervous anticipation, imagine the glee of the boys tearing through the house, the amazing sight of the cherry trees, etc. It may seem like “everyday” stuff, but it is the things that are lives are made of 99% of the time and it resonates with everyone. It is worth writing about!

  21. I started to write I hope you are keeping all your thoughts in a journal –haha that would be the blog – to repeat what everyone has said, if we would just trust all our worries are in vain – so excited for your new journey

  22. This makes me smile BIG TIME! Trusting in God’s plan in God’s time…I remind myself all the time, another one I use, please help me be satisfied, be content. I’m looking forward to seeing pictures of the house and you making it yours! So excited for you!!!

  23. Blessed be God. So happy for you! Minnesota and its winters seem a bit intimidating to me (having just moved from CA to OH),. On the plus side the winter will give you plenty of time for creative indoor projects.

    I had to laugh about your angry-furniture-arranging-face. That’s what I must look like, although I’ve never looked in the mirror. When I’m thinking of rearranging, I’m usually sitting in the victim room, planning and mentally moving. Without being told about my plans, the kids walk by and say, “Oh, no. Mama’s going to move furniture.” (which means they’re going to help and there might be no dinner during the chaos). I must have a “look.”

    1. The “victim room”! 😂 Yes, Jeff sometimes says, “uh-oh” when he sees me doing that. He knows upheaval is about to happen!

  24. I know you guys must have been on pins and needles those last days waiting and praying for that job offer. God knew even before you started this process where he was going to place you and because you put your faith in him he blessed you big time! I happen to go out on Youtube and catch a few of Jeff’s sermons which I enjoyed very much especially the one on what the Bible teaches us about debt.

    Now enough teasing….we want to see the house! I will pass out if its the house I saw on Realtor.com that had a pending status on it that I thought looked like you.

  25. Wow! Does this ever bring back memories. We were living in Dallas and got a job offer in a little town in west Texas (700 people). We knew at the time it was crazy, but the right fit. We took a leap of faith and made the move. God took us in a completely new direction and 20 plus years later (and several more moves), He is still leading us forward! Best wishes to you and your family. I’m so excited to watch the making of your new home on your blog. May God continue to bless you on your journey!

  26. Marian, I am so happy for you and your family! God is the master weaver after all and your tapestry isn’t done yet. He has impeccable timing and I love that about our father. As you said, he sees the larger picture and he wants that picture – like you as an artist – to be perfection. I look forward to reading about your journey! Becky

  27. May The Lord bless you on your move to our state~
    I do want to reassure you about our winter. It’s not any worse here than it is any where else in the Midwest. I have lived here, just a few miles north of Rochester, for 41 years. You have landed in a gem of an area to live in! Welcome and my best wishes to you and your family!

  28. Hi Marion~
    Your journey has brought a heightened sense of style and emotion to your writing, it’s palpable. As you begin your journey to a new home and life, I shared that I had just left that sacred place, “My Minnesota” as I call it… My heart is full for you and full of my incredible memories that I will always treasure. The landscape, bright blue skies, beautiful seasons, and most of all the people will embrace and change you. Best of all good things to you and your family. I feel that you will be very! happy in “My Minnesota.”
    Many blessings~ Cynthia

  29. as i deal with hundreds of emails a day i always stop to read every blog. Your business is successful, you are incredibly talented but what always draws me in is the openness you share with your readers. Your incredible faith in God moves me to tears, especially this journey of the last 4 months. You always with no thought or pondering put God first as your navigator, your husbands dreams and caring for your family before yourself. God will bless and cover you and your family and i am so very happy for you all and can’t wait to see what you do there. Spread your wings and fly to new heights!!!

  30. This makes me cry at God’s faithfulness and reaffirms that we can all trust him. I am so blessed in how you and Jeff are living out an intimate marriage and balancing risk with careful planning.

    Thanks for the reminder to vote on the rug designs. I’ve now done so and love yours so much! This month as I’ve put out more blue in my home in honor of Independence Day, I have realized anew that blue is my first love. Thanks in part to you, Marian, for that.

  31. This whole story shows that God doesn’t answer our prayers sometimes because he knows what is best for us when we can’t see it. You didn’t sell your house the first time because God didn’t have Jeff where he wanted him. Now he does. This has been a whirlwind of a story for me and more so for you and your family. I can’t wait for this next chapter to unfold for you. Your new church family, new house, new skies and fields to paint, new schools for the boys, new friends. The list goes on. Please hurry with the pictures of your new place. As the song goes, Thank God for unanswered prayers.

  32. He finally texted back…“This is our house.” That’s my favorite moment so far, within a lot of wonderful moments.
    You have a way of communicating that pulls people in, waiting to hear more. I look forward to hearing you speak in person someday. Your platform continues to grow & change.
    God reveals himself with his “voice” of intimacy. God desires to “reveal” his presence. God is in the “details” of minute substance. All we have to do is be available to his timing.
    I’m so excited for you & Jeff and the boys. How exciting for Jeff to seek new opportunities in ministry, stepping out in faith and the family as a whole on a new path. God bless the Parsons, Joan

  33. One day you’ll have to visit my house… it’s a Harold Crawford built in 1929 and the subject of the book ’30 Rooms to Hide In’ by Luke Sullivan.
    You will love Rochester- our favorite restaurants are Teigs and Broadway Pizza for the kids.
    The new Hyvee has great shopping- CLOTHES too! And the best breakfast in town.

  34. Marian, I’m so happy for you and your family. I couldn’t wait to read this 3rd installment. It made me cry but they are happy tears. I’m so glad that you and Jeff took a “leap of faith”.

  35. Hearing you describe the landscape of my beautiful state, particularly the Southeastern corner where I grew up, gave me goosebumps! Thank you for seeing the beauty! The older I get the more I realize what a gift I received growing up where I did. You will truly love it here!

    P.S. Cheat sheet coming! 😁

  36. I enjoy reading your blog and will enjoy seeing the new home transform with your mustard influence! We are readying to move to Seattle from PA. Talk about a transition! Family is on this coast but I am looking forward to our adventures in the Pacific North West! I see this a a new start for myself and a grand opportunity in our future. Thanks for sharing!

  37. Congratulations on all that has transpired, it has been wonderful following along, God is so very good. Have fun with your new place and send pictures when you can. Hope your son is better.

  38. Our God is so Good and Faithful!
    I am so happy for you all on every level! So looking forward to the pictures.
    You were the first blog I ever found and I have been following you since you were bleaching drop cloths.
    Everything I have learned about painting furniture and decorating has come from you.
    Looking forward to all the new chapters of your life!

  39. Good for you and your family. If you ever want another career how about writing?! You have a lovely
    hand and a wonderful way of expressing everything. It could be a Christian base something of course
    about family and decorating etc.

  40. Dear Marian,
    Praising and thanking God for His faithfulness to you and your precious family. I am so very happy to hear that your MN adventure is unfolding. I just wanted to share with you that my wonderful husband is from Rochester, Minnesota and he grew up there until he left for college. (We now live in California). I just wanted to confirm for you that Rochester, MN is a GREAT place to raise your family and dig in your roots. Yes, it’s a lovely place to call “Home Sweet Home.” May God’s sweetest blessings be upon you and your family!!!
    xo, Libby
    P.S. My husband was raised in Salem Road Covenant Church in Rochester.

  41. Marian, Your Faith Journey comes at a good time for me!.My husband and I are moving to Cape Cod
    to be closer to some of our grandchildren!We have to be out of our apartment by September 1
    and do not have a place to live yet!
    God Knew you did not have a Plan B!!.Enjoy your New Surroundings!..So glad I met you up in
    N.H. last fall at Sage Farm Show!! I will be living over 3 hours away from there now!

  42. What an incredibly beautiful story! I cannot wait to see the house! Best wishes and much happiness!

  43. Marian, I often say that the script God writes for us is better than anything we could come up with. We just have to be willing to follow that script…and sometimes that’s harder than at other times. God bless you for following this script with faith. And for sharing the journey with all of us!

  44. Sometimes when I’m watching HGTV or reading a blog, I’ll suddenly look around the room. My husband says “What are you doing? You keep looking over in the corner.” I tell him I’m just trying to figure out if an idea will work in my home. Now he’s gotten used to it and says “What are you planning now?” So I guess my “look” is suddenly looking in a bare corner of the room, kind of like a cat. I can’t wait to see pictures of your new home and what you plan to do to it.

  45. Wow! What an amazing testimony you have to the faithfulness of God to those who put their trust in Him. I read this story with tears in my eyes. I’ll miss your lovely merchandise at Lucketts (assuming that is to far to drive for a show, even a good one). I’d love to hear that you’ll be back. I missed this year because my daughter moved to NY but they missed Virginia and will be moving back next month so I’m set for Lucketts! Can’t wait for the next edition of “moving” and photos of your home and hear your plans for what changes you will be making.

  46. Ha! I have been perusing the recently sold homes in Rochester, and I don’t see one that says “Miss Mustard Seed.” Looking forward to seeing pics!

  47. Hi Miss Mustard Seed aka Marian – lol. I have been an avid follower of your blog for years and I always enjoy every word/project/idea! My son has moved to a small town (Askov) to do contract work and it was such short notice – literally packed and left over a weekend so imagine my surprise when I read that you are moving to MN – this might just be a chance of a lifetime to visit my son AND get to actually attend any MMS event – in the future!! Much success and an abundance of favor to you and your family!! ❤️ from Texas!

  48. Marian, I saw a sign today and thought of you and your family, the sign read, ” Gods plans may be bigger than your dreams” Can’t wait to see the house you picked.

  49. Wonderful story!!! God’s personal touches all over this!!! I’m thinking Jeff isn’t the only minister in the family!
    Can’t wait to follow on the journey of the new house and the decorating.

  50. I could not put this book down! It was a thrill of a read and in real time!
    I read parts one and two yesterday and the third part today! I was thrilled to see your message for part three in my email in box. Amazing! These are fresh events of the past few days! God,acts in our lives in so many ways but sometimes the material is just big screen in size! So excited to follow your story In Minnesota! Prayers for all the many transitions.

  51. Have you mentioned your dog in the move? If so, I apologize. I’m an animal lover, so I’m interested in how the move will affect him.

    Thanks and good luck!

  52. By the time I finished reading your moving story I had tears running down my face. This was truly meant to be. Looking forward to seeing all you do with a blank canvas.

  53. Oh my goodness, that gave me chills! I am so excited for you, and I’m looking forward to seeing pictures of your new home!

  54. Seems you made a wonderful choice and there is no doubting God’s choices for your future. Many blessings and much excitement to you and yours. Dear Lord we just have to listen! I always look forward to your post from here in Aus. Thank you for sharing.

  55. Marian, you made me cry! Such a beautiful story of faith for all of us – “way to listen and believe” seems more appropriate than “congratulations”.

  56. Thank you Marion for sharing your story, your faith, your family and your gifts with us. I am so happy for you and yours. I was thinking as I looked at the beginning of this chapter today that it is not only your ‘moving story’ , but your
    story is moving us all. ;0)

  57. I had to smile when you said your husband let you know how far to Trader Joe’s because before I moved from Southern California to Missouri, in December I checked out the same thing, along with IKEA. I fortunately moved after retiring from being a school nurse but I could identify with all your thoughts and concerns and then giving it to God to let be what was to be. So I guess I should just say welcome to the Midwest!

  58. Thanks for sharing the ups and downs and sideways of this journey, but most of all, I share your trust in God. It is hard to think all eggs in one basket, but that is not the way we must choose to live. It is that you either have complete trust or not. I say this as we go through our own test of faith. It is great to have a spouse who believes. Hey, I am the Minnesotan who on your moving story # 2 mentioned Gold Rush Days in August. Rochester is a darling town, lots of history. The book The Brothers Mayo is a long one but a great one to start with, the home in Rochester is a nice small tour. For the great museums, etc, come to Mpls, St. Paul. The Mn Institute of Arts, the Russian Museum, the History Theater, the Guthrie await you. Enjoy your first year. Just enjoy being a home, being a part of a new direction for your family.

  59. Thank you for sharing your faith journey. It brought back so many memories leading up to “our call.” You will always remember that moment. God is faithful! Be blessed as you continue to serve Him!

  60. What a wonderful story! Thank you for sharing it with your readers. I seem to remember that your parents moved from another state to be close to your family. Will they relocate or stay where they are? Congratulations on all the exciting adventures! Look forward to seeing photos of your new home.

  61. Marian, thank you for sharing your testimony. It brought me to tears. Psalm 37 :3-5 (one of my faves come to mind). ” Trust in the Lord, and do good, Dwell in the land and feed on His faithfulness. Delight yourself also in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of you heart. Commit your way to the Lord, Trust also in Him and He shall bring it to pass”. Congratulations on your move! Thank you for your encouraging testimony! Blessings, Judy

  62. See ….life can be a “bowl of cherries” sometimes !😀 The sweet comes along with the challenges that sometimes gets handed out to is . Your story is a good lesson in The meaning of FAITH😀 When something is approaching that we know is going to be life changing and we can’t see it , can’t hear it, can’t smell it and we don’t have a shread of evidence what it will be, but we keep moving toward it knowing that it will all work out because the Lord is holding is in the palm of His hands, that is real FAITH in action. I’m glad it is all finally unfolding itself for you and your family, and that you are sharing it for all of us who follow . Blessings to ya’ll and I can’t wait for the photos to come

  63. We are delighted all came about through your trust in the Lord. What fun we will all have enjoying your new adventures. Thank you and God Bless.

  64. So very happy for you and your family….How exciting to be setting g up your new home…..It will be awesome!

  65. Thank you, Miss Mustard Seed and Christian readers, for your wise observations about the exciting things happening in Marian’s life.

    As a Buddhist, I’m impressed that Marian and Jeff’s approach reflects an understanding that many factors beyond their control are at work, along with a desire to take action to pursue their dreams. It brings to mind the Zen proverb, “Move and way will open.”

  66. Wow, Marian, what a testimony of God’s amazing goodness! I’m so excited for you and your family and just know that this is going to be an adventure of a lifetime for you all. You are all going to be such a blessing to the people, both in and out of church, in your new hometown. Welcome home! x

  67. So many times I want to comment but you have so many comments I don’t. I love your blog, I love your faith, I love your blog. Gods blessings!

  68. Glad to hear that God is bringing you to MN on your journey. We love it here and can’t think of another place I’d rather be. Excited to be closer to you and your future shop! Can’t wait to hear more about your new home, hubby’s job, the kid’s adjustment. Mayo Clinic is awesome and the place to be for your son’s diabetes. Welcome!!!

  69. I am so happy for you and your family and the ending of this story! What a wonderful story that was meant to be, and to be told. It even feels right for us readers through the screen here. It will be fun to follow along and see how Rochester influences your business and aesthetic. I could see the vast countryside of Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa and Illinois having much to offer you. My husband and I lived in Minnesota (Twin Cities) for awhile and left for Chicago and its big city allure. We were fooled. I miss Minnesota!

  70. I loved your moving story and the faith you showed. Congratulations to your husband on his new job and best wishes as your family creates a new home in MN. I was hoping for Kansas City but am thrilled that all worked out for you.

  71. Having been born in the beautiful state of Minnesota and now a resident of Wisconsin I welcome you and your family to “out neck of the woods”!
    You gave it to God and kept the faith…you are where you were meant to be! Blessings!

  72. Marion,
    TO GOD BE THE GLORY!!!! Thank you for sharing your steps of Faith. God is so Good! God is able to do more abundantly than all that we ask or think. (Eph. 3:20). Looking forward to seeing pictures of your new home and your adventures in MN.

  73. Marian- We readers are sitting in the passenger’s seat next to you. (Hooray for pulling Jane Austen along for the fun of it, too!) Thank you for showing us how the Leap of Faith is done when it is done well. The Lord is good and merciful. Soak it all up. Learn the history of your new place. Teach it to your boys as you go, and make Minnesota’s history part of your history. My parents plucked us up out of suburbia and plopped us into a rural town of 10,000. And that number includes the cows. We were 18 hours from everyone we ever knew. My Mother showed us every museum, candy factory, historical home tour, Mennonite cinnamon roll restaurant, and scientific discovery spot within a hundred miles of our new home. And suddenly we were part of the fabric of our new state. It was so good for our souls. To this day, I still know more about the history of my husband’s hometown, and his home state, than he does. Sometimes a person finds out that part of herself was just waiting to be born… far away. God is good!

  74. Praising God for His faithfulness to you and your family, Marian and Jeff! Praying for a smooth transition for Jeff as he begins his FT ministry as the head pastor. Praying that the boys will be blessed with many new friends, and that your business will continue to grow. And, above all, that much glory would be brought to Him through all of this… and it definitely is! God is good, all the time!

  75. Congratulations on your new home❤️ God is so good even when the patiently waiting is so hard for us, he’s already got it all planned down to every last detail.
    My husband will be retiring from from the fire dept in 2019… We will be moving back to Tx from Oklahoma……….. closer to our kids and almost 4 grandchildren 🙂
    He has lived in this home since 1990! I’m already clearing out stuff😧
    It’s exciting and scary all in the same sentence…
    But I will try to take it one day at a time and let God lead us. 🙏🌺
    Your blog has been a blessing to my ❤️. Enjoy the ride

  76. Congratulations on your plans! I was riveted reading about it! I can’t wait to see the pictures of your new adventures. Good things come to those who wait is what my Grandma used to say…and indeed…you have good things on the horizon…

  77. I am so excited to hear you are moving to Rochester!! I grew up here. Left for 30 years and now I’m back. Rochester has changed a lot since the 80’s. We are growing by leaps and bounds. It is the best place to raise a family.
    Minnesota Nice is abundant here. Contact me, if you need a shopping buddy. Oronoco Gold Rush and Rochester Gold Rush is coming in mid-August. A must see!!
    God bless and welcome to your new home.

  78. Frieda (& Marian),
    I feel the EXACT same way! This is such a meaningful & faith-filled testimony. It shows 110% EXACTLY what COMPLETE faith & trust in God can bring into our lives-
    It is hard sometimes to set our will & desires aside & to instead pray about & wait for God’s plan…BUT, when we do that, God does AMAZING, AMAZING things in our lives!!!
    I have read the entire story through so many tears & amen’s that I could never begin to count them… & I still have goosebumps all over!
    Praying for nothing but the best for you guys as you get everything settled & prayers as well that you are able to bless your new community just as much as it will bless you!

  79. How lucky we are here in MN to have you close to us ❤️ Yay!
    Welcome! Can’t wait to meet you someday.

  80. Well, I just cried reading this, like I’m taking the journey with you! My husband, daughter, and I are also taking some major leaps of faith right now. It is scary, but we know it is right! Love everything you share. Thank you!

  81. Marion,
    A year ago my husband and I spent 6 weeks in Rochester at the Mayo Clinic because of health issues that he was having. We were blown away by the kindness shown to us at Mayo and in the town of Rochester itself. We live in Montana where people are nice but I think Minnesota people are a notch above! Blessings to you and your family in your home.

  82. Marion,
    Been reading your blog for a couple of years now. Have to say that writing is yet another one of your God given talents! Your storytelling is so good, (as evidenced by all the comments on this story), and your photography is really artistic, just like your watercolor painting! And add to that, the Pastor’s wife! So much talent! God bless your family on this journey, and I must say Thank-you for sharing it so eloquently with the blogosphere! I look forward to every post!

  83. I loved your story and your faith in God that he had a plan for you all. Looking forward to hearing about your new life in Minnesota. I’m sure your home will be personalized in no time at all and I look forward to seeing your decor. Enjoy this special time with your family and new friends.

  84. I’ve never read your blog before (I just clicked over because of The Nester on FB), but God really spoke to me through reading your story this morning. I feel as though I have a new vision for faith, for something I can’t see but that God is working on and my life and my family. Thank you for sharing your story. I have subscribed and I’m looking forward to hearing more.

  85. In 2000 while living in Washington, D.C., I made my first visit to Lucketts, while my patient husband waited over two hours as I looked at EVERYthing. I brought out-of-town guests there, and made visits whenever possible after we moved back home. It always more fun than the law allows, as Aunt Dottie would say.

    Minnesota is a wonderful place to live, and Rochester is great! You’ll be within an easy drive of the Twin Cities and the beautiful bluff country in the southeast part of our state, as well as endless opportunities in our neighboring states. Welcome!

  86. I have neever met you and I rarely comment, but wow!! What an amazing journey of faith you have been on! And if you literally stopped at every rest stop in Ohio you were very close to where I live in Michigan! It would have been nice to catch a fleeting glimpse of Ms Mustard Seed!! 😀 May God continue to bless your family as you follow Him!!

  87. Well, Marian and girlfriends, now I know I wasn’t the only one who cried while reading this wonderful story! From the first mention of “Rochester,” my mind leapt to the blessing it would be for your family to be so close to the Mayo Clinic. It was as if God began by telling you he was looking out for your smallest sparrow. The way you “parsoned” out the rest of the story was better than reading Nancy Drew as a kid! Remember how our moms would say we could finish the chapter before turning out the light, yet every chapter was a cliff-hanger? (I’m also thinking Very Little House on the Prairie-ish.) With love from a Middle School English teacher ~ XoXo

  88. Like so many other readers, I’ve been with you since the beginning of your blog. When I first read of your move, I was in shock – feeling as though a close friend was moving away to a place a new nothing about. I even went online and looked up the town of Rochester. Silly I know. But you’ve become such a big part of my daily life and have inspired me to start my own furniture refinishing business and blog. And it’s all been wonderful. So thank you, good luck, and I can’t wait to hear all about Minnesota. Smiles.

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