God’s Will: An Unexpected Adventure, By PI Girl Anna Joy

    I am not from a military family. Yet I have probably moved from place to place far more often than any military family I can think of. Was I moving from one state to another? No. One house to another? No. Then what were the locations that I constantly moved from? Schools and churches. The places that probably have the largest amount of people who love you. Probably the places that are the hardest to move from.

    Yes, I do fully understand that change is natural. But I have been to nearly 15 churches, four middle schools and two high schools in my life. And I’m only a high school sophomore.

    Why all this moving? Did criminals work at the schools? Were the churches uncaring and hostile? Absolutely not! The reason I have moved so much in my lifetime from various schools and churches has been for one reason: God gave my mother a restless heart.

    My mother was always able to find faults in the schools I attended, be it a terrible teacher, a not-so-convenient distance from home or just a general dislike of how they run things. On average, I stayed at a middle school for one year. Sometimes we even left in the middle of the year. In my younger years, my mom switched back and forth between homeschooling my brother and I and sending us to the same elementary school I attended in second, half of fourth and fifth grade.

    If the school switching was bad, the church switching was even worse. There is only one church I stayed at for longer than three years. That one was the hardest to leave. The usual reasons why we changed churches so frequently were far more complicated than the school switching reasons. They usually involved doctrine disagreements, lack of love and unification and poor pastoral leadership. I stayed at one church on average for about six months to 16 months. I have visited about every branch and denomination of Christianity, including non-denominational (another term for Protestant beliefs in general).

    I used to be so angry and bitter about the constant church and school switching. It ruined my parent’s marriage, my brother’s and my social lives and affected my school performance. Up until this Sunday, I held onto this bitterness and refused to understand why we moved so much. I was often angry at my mom about it.

    Then, I started to experience that restless feeling in my heart myself. I didn’t understand it. I resisted it. The church I am currently attending is wonderful. The people are wonderful. They really opened their arms and accepted us. I wrestled with God. Why must I change again? I’ve suffered so much from this change; why must I do it yet again? Why am I becoming my mother? Do you know that this will affect my brother, not just me? Why? I fought for weeks.

    Then, one Sunday, as I left the church service crying and struggling emotionally, I realized why God wanted me to change. It was His will for my life. And He has done it before. Whenever I try to get comfortable in my little cozy world of routine (having Asperger’s Syndrome, routine is an absolute must), God sweeps me off my feet into an unexpected adventure. No comfort zones allowed. And through it, He has done miraculous things in my life and others far beyond anything I can possibly imagine. So, as I stand at the doorstep of my church preparing to leave, I am ready for my next adventure.

    In the movie “The Sound of Music,” Maria quotes, “Whenever the Lord closes a door, He always opens a window.” God has opened window after window in my life after a hard change. Through my parent’s divorce, He opened the window of compassion. By closing the numerous church and school doors, He has taught me to treat every friend as precious.

    And now, as yet another church door is being shut, I will soon have to say goodbye to my friends. It will be immensely difficult. I love them all, and they have left a huge imprint on my heart. However, as I hoist myself on the wings of a dove and prepare for the next gust, I know that they will always stay with me. God will not let me forget the wonderful love and compassion they bestowed on me. And being only 16, it truly is not the end. It is the beginning of a grand adventure that only God can create. “This is the LORD’s doing, and it is marvelous in our eyes.” Psalm 118:23

    Written by PI Girl Anna Joy

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    Hey girlies! I am a strong Christian girl, 16 years old, a zealous pro-lifer, and I have a developmental condition known as Asperger's Syndrome. Nowadays scientists label it as "mild autism"; it basically means that I am very intelligent and creative, but have limited social skills (ie lack of eye contact, blurting out irrelevant things, tending to "live in my own head"). Despite my shortcomings, God has formed me into the beautiful young lady I am today and given me a heart for Him and for others. I hope to someday be a missionary, psychiatrist, author, or whatever God calls me to be someday (decisions, decisions!). I enjoy writing poetry, reading, watching movies, eating, sleeping, designing fashion, painting, doodling, and talking to my mom, the most important (human) influence on my life. God has a lot of amazing plans for my life, and despite not having the easiest of lives, He has made it all work together for good (Romans 8:28).


    1. Thank you so, so much for sharing. This is so inspiring to me in so many ways. Your attitude toward change is phenomenal and a God-given gift…My big brother, the most amazing person I know, has Asperger’s Syndrome as well, so I understand the necessity of routine. I mean, really, don’t we all? Every time something doesn’t go as I plan, every time God takes me some place that I wasn’t planning on going, I feel as if my world is turned upside down. But, as you said, that is just the beginning of a magnificent adventure with our Lord! And what greater joy do we have then to be a part of the adventure? That moment that we let go of what we think we want or need and let God have it, crazy, awesome things happen. I just know you’re in for some crazy, awesome things. Thank you for sharing, and I’m praying for you!

    2. This is absolutely amazing!! It taught me so much to value every person I come across as precious, and to trust God to open a window when things are going rough. Thank you so much for sharing!!!

    3. I’m having trouble trusting God and seeing how all this junk is going to turn out A-OK. My fifth friend just left the church, and I won’t see him very often any more. I don’t have any current good friends. Right now it feels like God’s making a hobby of yanking all my friends away, and steering away any potential friends. I know that’s not what anyone else thinks, and my opinion might change, but that’s what it is right now.

      • This past year in school, I had no close Christian friends. It was SUCH a struggle for me not to get the fellowship with them that I craved… But I kept pursuing God through his Word and prayer. Looking back, God used this situation to get me out of my comfort zone and learn to evangelize a little better. On a different note, my very close friend got into an extremely destructive friendship and I am now SO thankful that God allowed me not to be part of it. KEEP YOUR EYES ON THE LORD DURING THIS TIME. If you do, one day you may notice that you have grown SO much closer to the one person who loves you completely and knows exactly what you need at all times. Also, try praying for friends. I didn’t, because I didn’t really think about that, but I know from a friend that when she was in a similar situation (high school, not many close friends) God gave her friends for seasons of her life.

    4. im happy the Lord is doing this for you, i can actually relate..moving around so much so often never staying stable sucks sometimes i even lost friends back home and it hurts but you’ve just inspired me thank you <3

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