I just left my ministry (via Art.17) at the church where I was called. The pastorate is something I have loved and sometimes hated over the last 31 years. Now I am in transition; I am in the time of "in-between."
It feels like I now stand in the hallway of a hospital. There are many rooms each with their own pain, hurts, unknowns, and healing which needs to take place. Desiring to get to the exit (out of this in-between) will involve going past the number of rooms and around the corner.
I have three options. First, just stay in the hall, try to keep “out of the way” and hope that most people avoid me. Second, I can make a bolt towards the end of the hall, stop briefly, and then bolt towards the exit under the visible sign to the outside. Third, I could take the time and go into each room. I could stay long enough to listen to the care providers talking with myself, who is also in the bed in each room, and then engage with myself to find healing or insight so that I could then move back into the hallway and further on.
The first option is avoidance by way of a passive-aggressive fight response. The second is avoidance by way of the flight response. Finally, the third is the one I should take because it is necessary, even though scary, feels like a waste of time, and / or will possibly become more damaging to myself, family, and my faith. Still, I know this is best.
For the next number of blogs that I write, I invite you with me on my journey of the “in-between.” My hope is that through this process and your sharing of insights, reflections, questions, and empathy, a deepening and widening of my life will be realized. A meaningful journey of realizing that on the Potter’s wheel, God could use you in helping reshape and cover the cracks in this jar of clay. I do not want to just get “through” this time; rather, I desire to see a development and restoration to progress for framing further lifelong faith formation and learning whereby I can progress from hurting, to healed, towards renewed.