– Ben Martens

Big Decisions

There are points in my life where I’m faced with big decisions even though I feel largely unqualified to make the right choice. Two of those came up recently.

The first was “Where should we send Elijah to school?” Proximity to school through grade 8 was a big reason why we bought this house. It would be so nice to just walk out the door and be at school instead of dealing with traffic and commute time. But on the flip side, we’ve really been enjoying our experience at our church preschool and kindergarten. Tyla and I both attended WELS grade schools and we have reaped the benefits both spiritually and intellectually. There are some great WELS schools in the area but they are too far away to make them work.

At the marriage retreat last fall, we talked to a Pastor from our area who mentioned Zion Lutheran School up in Lake Stevens. It’s an LCMS school and after visiting it, we felt like God was nudging us in that direction. It will mean a ~30 minute commute one way to school, but it’s doable and we’re going to give it a shot. We don’t love it as much as we’ve loved the WELS schools and we’ll need to pay closer attention to the doctrine he’s taught, but we’re going to give it a go.

The second big issue arose after I popped my head up into the attic for my annual (well… less than that because I’m lazy) check of the crawl space and attic. I discovered obvious mold. I stared at it for quite a while before acknowledging that there was no way to ignore this and hope it went away. Thankfully, we found a contractor who has been great to work with and the remediation plan is well underway. We caught it plenty early so that no structural damage was done and there were no health concerns. Once we finish the remediation plan, there will be a lifetime warranty that gets transferred to future owners so I feel pretty good about the situation.

During the decision making processes, there was no avoiding the fact that both choices could have dramatic and long-reaching effects on our future. The school one was obviously more important, but making the wrong choice with the house could easily cost us tens of thousands of dollars in the short term or when we sell the house. Through it all, my prayer was always “Lord, you know the path I should take. I feel like you’re leading me to this choice. Please make it obvious if I’m supposed to choose something different.” God has it all planned out for us and it can feel like a shock when he reveals some of the bumps to us, but there’s comfort in knowing that he’s going to make it all work out for the best. (Romans 8:28, Jeremiah 29:11)