Never Alone

May 24, 2024

By: Tina Stumpfhauser

"For if you live according to the flesh, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live. For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God." Romans 8:13

For those that don't know me, I'm a Tampa Girl. Born and raised. My family is here. My memories are here. My life is here. So, when I met my husband in 2000, I quickly told him that this Tampa Girl was never going to move away from Tampa. That's that. He not only agreed, but he asked me to marry him and clearly had all intentions of staying put in Tampa. 

Fast forward ten years, now married with two kiddos and in desperate need of a new job, my husband drives three hours south to interview for a position that was posted in Tampa and we assumed would be in Tampa. So he had to interview down in Naples.... 3 hours away.... no big deal. Perhaps it will require travel, but Tampa will still be home. That must be the case.  

Then I got the call on his way home, "I have good news and I have bad news". Okay, give it to me. I'm ready. "The good news," he says, "is that I think I'm going to get the offer and I believe it's going to be an amazing opportunity. The bad news unfortunately, it's in Naples and three hours away so we're not even going to consider it. It's okay."

OHHHH My Heart!!! I hung up the phone and I immediately felt the Holy Spirit nudging me. Heeyyyy... What about me... are you not even going to talk to me about this? That's what I'm here for!

Yikes! I spent the next few hours wrestling with my emotions and when my husband walked through the door all I could say was, "I think we need to pray about this."

And pray we did!!!! I had never prayed so hard or so intentional in my life. When I woke up, I prayed. When I was washing dishes, I prayed. When I was driving, I prayed. In the shower, yep .... you get the idea. I was praying aaaalll day, on my knees, crying out to the Lord. And every time I turned around, the Holy Spirit kept showing me His plans. And His plans were clearly not my plans. And a few weeks later we were moving to a new city and starting a new chapter. 

We have all been in these situations. The sticky, confusing spots in life when we truly don't know what to do. We feel lost, alone, and desperate for answers. But the truth is, we are NEVER alone. Our God wants us to cry out to Him, ask Him, talk to Him, share with Him. And then be still enough and quiet enough to hear and feel His promptings. Romans Chapter 8 tells us to live by the Spirit. This means we are to call on Him, and not trust our flesh. His guidance and direction are there for all of us. This is what it means to truly be spirit-led. 

Concerned about a family member? Maybe your child? A friend? A health concern? Financial struggles? Are you truly allowing the Holy Spirit to lead you and give you the discernment He has promised you? Instead of picking up the phone and calling the friend or jumping on social media to get the piece of advice you think you need, go to the best advisor. The one who knows you better than you know yourself. The Holy Spirit. 

I'm sooooo grateful that I was obedient to the Lord in 2010. God blessed us abundantly with a support system and a loving community down in Naples and I made some of my best memories. But seven years later, He made it very clear we were supposed to move back. Back home. Here in Tampa. That made this Tampa girl happy! 

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