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Life is Full of Lessons By Suzy West

Life is full of lessons. Handle them with care. Really!

I love a new project – especially one that will utilize my gifts but also challenges me in the process. God knows this. He created me the way I am. But I’m also a sinful creature that can be too self-assured at times.

“Tough project, no problem. Bring it on.”

After a very intense month, I am humbled. In looking back, I feel a little like Noah. He willingly answered God’s call to head up a big project, but honestly he had to follow directions very closely. This is exactly what happened to me.

The challenge…

Me: Tami, I think we need to move our office.

Tami: Really?

The month of June for Christian Leadership Alliance is a busy one – past conference wrap up and next conference start up, Board meeting, annual Staff Week planning retreat in California, and our fiscal year end. This year God decided to toss in a little overtime.

Psalm 135:6: Whatever the Lord pleases He does, in heaven and in earth, in the seas and in all deep places.

Me: The landlord is starting major exterior renovation to the 635 building we’ve been in for 20 years, causing disruption for six months, followed by an increase in rent.

Tami: It sound like it’s time to walk the block and see what is out there.

The search is on…

Heather: Space in this retail center next door would be too noisy.

Ruth: Parking around this medical office building would be too busy.

Holly: This building looks nice! It’s just across the street so we can stay right where we are (almost).

It felt a bit like the three bears. 629, Suite 309 might be just right! Even if it’s only 530 square feet for five staff.

Me: The landlord at 629 has never rented without a personal guaranty.

Tami: Really?

Me: Dear Lord, if you want us to have this space, please let the landlord waive the requirement.

Isaiah 41:10: Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.

The adventure begins…

I think about my top 5 StrengthFinders: Responsible, disciplined, achiever, learner, and belief. It seems like those could come in handy at a time like this, right?

Don’t be so sure Suzy. You are not in control!

James 4:15-16: Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we shall live and do this or that.” But now you boast in your arrogance. All such boasting is evil.

The “To Do’s” take shape…

Sign lease, give notice, pick new flooring/paint, order insurance binder, pack our desks, and enlist Holly and Ruth’s sons to help physically move us the 300 yards across the street.

Did I mention that Heather had previously scheduled a 3-day vacation and Sumi was out two weeks for cataract surgery?

Decide what furniture stays and what goes. Review every file folder, every binder, every financial record from the past two decades. Schedule shredder and Salvation Army pick up.

Me: Sumi, can you remember the lock combination to the trash bin?

Sumi: Yes, its 5035.

Cancel Sparkletts water, put in for a change of address, work with our IT partner to switch to an iCloud based phone system (Really?), run ads, learn more about eBay and PayPal than I ever thought possible, pack, move, decide what goes where, hook up the new modum/firewall/router, test the phone system again (and again), donate furniture.

Dedra: (while at the new office during staff week): The restroom key for 629 doesn’t work.

Me: Really?

Landlord: We can get you a new one by the end of next week.

Sweat, cry on each other’s shoulders, get frustrated, hug, think it will NEVER end, but it finally does — with sweet joy!

1 Corinthians 15:57: But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ

It is finished…

Me: (voice mail message to Tami): It’s Suzy. It’s Wednesday, June 29 at 4:23 pm and I’m taking the old phone system over to UPS to ship back to the vendor. The move is officially finished. I want to celebrate!

God: Really? Wait til you see what I have in store for July.

Sometimes we learn lessons, but time goes by, memories fade, and we forget those lessons. My prayer is that trusting God for EVERYTHING is a lesson I will never forget.

Genesis 6:22: Thus Noah did; according to all that God commanded him, so he did.

What lessons have you learned that you need to remember?


Suzy West is the VP of Operations and Finance for Christian Leadership Alliance.


What is Christian Leadership Alliance?

Christian Leadership Alliance equips and unites leaders to transform the world for Christ. We are the leaders of Christ-centered organizations who are dedicated to faithful stewardship for greater kingdom impact.

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