Why We Moved to Los Angeles Saturday, December 16th, 2017
I was standing at my kitchen sink in February, making dinner (but first cleaning the dishes from all of the other meals and snacks of the day)… when I heard Him.
“When the offer comes in, take it and go.”
I looked around the house. There was worship music playing in the background. The kids were watching TV and taking turns jumping off of the couch. It was a completely normal evening at the Thompson house… you know, except for the part where our lives changed forever.
I grabbed my cell phone from the counter, opened the note app, and started to type. I didn’t want to forget those words.
What offer? Where were we going? Were we all going? Was I the only one going? How long would we be gone? A million unanswered questions replayed in my heart. While I had no idea what God meant, I knew that the weight of what He said rested heavily on my heart.
Have you ever heard God speak? I’m always asked after I share a story like this one what God sounds like when He speaks to me. While it’s different for many of us, to me, God’s voice sounds like a thought that isn’t my own.
Just like you are reading these words in your head, God’s voice sounds like I read a sentence rather than had my own thought… Like new information being shared with my heart rather than a thought being produced by my own spirit.
So there it was, heard and then typed out in black pixels on a white screen.
“When the offer comes in, take it and go.”
I didn’t tell Jared right away. I’m not sure why. Maybe because I was nervous or uncertain. Maybe because I didn’t know what God’s words meant yet. Maybe because I was hoping God would speak to Jared too… this time with a few more details.
Jared was working out of town, and when he got back, I would talk with him about what God had said. That was my plan at least. When Jared came home, we would know more. The funny thing is, when Jared came home, we knew MUCH MUCH more.
Two years ago, I went to a women’s conference at a church in Redding, CA. Lisa Bevere, Christine Caine and some of my other favorite women ministers would be speaking. It was a last minute trip, but it felt significant. Ever had a moment when you knew God was leading you to do something specific? Well, I jumped on a plane (something I had never done alone), and flew across the country to California for the first time.
Just before the last leg of my trip, I found myself at LAX airport with Lisa Bevere. I was super nervous, but I was flying across the country to hear her speak. I thought I could at least muster up some bravery to thank her for her ministry while she was standing ten feet away from me at the gate.
She was busy talking to another woman, and the two of them were leaning against the glass waiting to board our flight. So, being my completely awkward self, I went and leaned up against the glass window as well, with my back to them.
Slowly, I backed toward them, trying to time my spin and leap into their conversation at the best time.
I’m pretty sure that TSA was watching me, wondering why I was being such a creeper. But, it was worth it, because I turned around, stuck out my hand and said, “HI! I’m Becky!” And that’s how Lisa and I became best friends.
Just kidding. God was arranging that meeting, just not the one I had suspected. Because the person God actually wanted me to meet was the woman talking with Lisa.
That’s how I met Michelle. Michelle is a worship leader in Los Angeles, and she and I connected over the next few days of the conference. During those few days in California, God did some major work in my heart and laid out some blueprints that I didn’t even know how to read yet. He planted some things. He spoke some things, and I went home with my heart full and my head spinning.
There wasn’t just something significant about the connection to Michelle, there was something significant about the connection to California. I just couldn’t put my finger on what it was exactly.
THE SHORT VERSION
So, here’s the short version of what happened next.
Michelle and I became friends, and God specifically asked her to be a bridge, connecting me to people in her life.
She invited me to come back to California just to meet some people. And God made a way for that to happen. Just weeks before my first book, Hope Unfolding, launched, I was on a plane headed to Los Angeles.
The crazy part of that trip wasn’t just how God seemed to be in each detail of every meeting. It was in the way I felt as I left.
When I got on the plane to fly home, it felt like I was leaving home rather than going home. California (Los Angeles specifically) kept calling us back.
Over the course of that year (2016) Jared and I traveled back and forth to California multiple times – in April, May, July, and November. Each time, God was deepening our love for the people and some specific churches here. Each trip revealed another small piece of His plan.
SO BACK TO THE KITCHEN
I cleaned up the rest of dinner and went to bed with God’s words churning over and over in my spirit. The night that Jared came home from working out of town, He arrived late. The kids were already asleep. The house was quiet. I was folding clothes on our bedroom floor.
He walked in, sat on the edge of our bed and said, “I think it’s time for us to move to California.”
I will save these details for another post, but God had spoken to Jared through a message he was listening to while he drove home.
I sat there with wide eyes, and said, “Okay. Let’s do it.”
I told him about the words God had spoken to me in the kitchen a few days before. I told him that we would start praying about the specifics. I told him that I was all in… But I had no idea how hard the next nine months would be.
It’s one thing to trust God in our hearts – it’s another thing all together to trust Him when it comes to taking the first step out of the boat.
SO HOW DID HE DO IT? WHAT WAS THE OFFER? HOW DID HE WORK OUT ALL OF THOSE DETAILS?
We put our house on the market and sold it without any way to pay for life here in LA. We took step after step with only the light we could see right in front of us until we arrived in sunny California (via some really dark days). The miracles the Lord performed in our lives to help us reach this point deserve their own post, and I’ll share them sometime. But for now, we are settling into our new rent house here in a suburb of Los Angeles county. And every day that we are here is a reminder that the One who calls us is faithful to provide.
I’d love to hear from you. Has God every called you to anything that seems outrageous? What did you do?