Tag Archives: New Life

Another Year

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It’s hard for me to believe that today is the last day of being 40.  Turning 41 seems like a bigger deal than turning 40.  I guess because I feel as if I have been through a year of physical challenges and the emotional ones that go along with it and at some level hope this isn’t what all years will look like.  But I’m taking this day to begin a New Years resolution of sorts – making changes in the way that I handle life around me.  Some of those changes may be a bit scary and some of them come with a sense of relief.  If I want to live another 40 years I know that it’s time to put into practice some of the very things that I tell those I pastor on a regular basis.  It’s time to do some things that refresh me and allow my energy and God’s love and grace to flow throw me.  

During the past year my life seemingly fell apart, childhood trauma hit me again and this time as a flying brick coming out of no where.  I wasn’t expecting it to rehaunt my life but it did and it forced me into a major depressive episode which led to new meds and a new therapist.  It also was the leading cause in a medical leave of absence from the church I serve.  One of the toughest things I had to do was to stop being a pastor to others and allow some to care for me.  It wasn’t long after my return to work that I had a hysterectomy and appendectomy – another tough and emotional event.   As my 40th year was drawing to a close I returned to Canada to officiate at my grandfather’s funeral.  This proved to be a time filled with great blessing and a time of sadness as I learnt new things about my family of origin and yet was blessed with a reunion of sorts with my Aunt, Uncle,and cousins and got to meet an Aunt I’d never met.  I hope that these new and reformed relationships will grow as time goes by. I celebrated my 16th year of ordination and thus faithful service to the Moravian Church – service to a God I love and a church I deeply appreciate and care for.  

So today I spent time not only looking back over the past year but more looking into the year that lies ahead.  This morning I spent some time with my counselor and I can’t begin to emphasize how much of a life saver she was as I travelled through this past year (and I can’t help but say if you are considering getting a counselor – do it, it just might save your life too but at the very least it will enrich it).  This afternoon I’ll spend some time learning about continued ways to serve the church and this evening will be topped off with some time of doing what I love to do most knitting!

As I enter a new year of life I pray that I may more fully become the person that God created and continues to create and call me to be.  I know that takes a commitment on my part to tend to myself – my whole self- body, spirit and mind.  I make this commitment and look forward to watching the ways that will help me to grow.  I look forward to creating more (hopefully finishing my first knitted sweater), coloring more, taking time to take more pictures and letting the spirit recreate and create a new in me.  I certainly look forward to enhancing my ability to minister and going on my first cruise in February with other revgals.  Lastly, I look forward to a more uplifting year filled with the peace and hope that comes when claimed as a child of God! 

 

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First Friday Five….

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Littleman's Robin

Littleman’s Robin

The final push to getting myself together and a starting a blog was my recent joining a group of folks (mostly female clergy but certainly not limited) known as the RevGalBlogPals.  They are a wonderful group that has already offered much insight, encouragement and a fair dose of laughter to my life.  One of the things they do (and they do a lot) is something called Friday Five.  Each Friday there are 5 different questions or blogging prompts and whomever chooses plays along by answering and/or reflecting in some way on that Fridays Famous Five.  Today is my first time playing and hopefully I manage to get all the links right, if not I’ll retry tomorromy when I’m at my desk.  So here goes….The Friday Five blogger today writes and asks:

Can you believe it is April 12????  Have you finished your taxes?  Here in Boston, the city is abuzz with Boston Marathon anticipation.  We are finally hearing birds chirp in the morning, and even though it was in the low thirties last night, many of us are bravely sporting open-toed sandals.   None of this has anything to do Friday Five, except randomness.   So, in that spirit……

1.  How are you doing?  What’s going on in your life?

Overall, I am doing well.  I’m in the midst of some significant opportunities for pastoral care, with the death of a prayer warrior and pillar of the church I serve.  I love standing on this Holy Ground with folks I am called to care for.  It also reminds me of some of the joys in ministry and why I love being a pastor.  However, all that being said, I’m also very exhausted and my body is starting to rebel a bit and my pain levels are increasing a bit.

2.  Have you ever resigned from a position?  What was the good-bye like?

Yes – have resigned from 3 churches and several part time jobs that helped sustain me while serving those 3 churches (although on 1 of those jobs would I classify as significant as I worked there for 6 years).  Announcing that we had accepted new calls was always met with mixed emotions – some where happy we were leaving, some were angry and hurt and others didn’t really care.  One of the churches was so hard to leave, it was our first call, so we grew a lot as pastors and as a couple (we were married less than a year when move arrived there).  The congregation had a wonderful celebration of our ministry and the children created a scrapbook for us of the things they remember most about us.  Yet we knew it was time to move on.  The next two calls were easier to say goodbye and at times harder to know why we were called in the first place,  however with time we were able to see clearly that God had called us and God had used us.

Now, my job at Hallmark (during the call before the one we have now) was a gift.  I loved my bosses and loved my customers.  Even though neither of my bosses (the owners) were Christian we had a deep respect for one another and I truly felt as if they would be there for me no matter what.  I trusted them and in turn they trusted me.  I cried big tears when I told them we were moving and I cried bigger tears when I had to hand in my key and say good-bye.  My bosses were so gracious and kept telling me we were doing what was best for our family.  Indeed but I truly miss them and I worked with some good co-workers who I became a lot of things to a a pastor at times, a mom like figure at times, a friend, and the mean co-worker who made them work.

3. So, we are still resurrecting…still getting used to New Life!!  What is a source of new life for you?

The Lord is risen.  The Lord is risen indeed!   Yes we are still resurrecting and in the Easter season….so new life, lets see.  Its spring in North Carolina (at least right now) so the trees are budding, the flowers are blooming and the birds are singing joyous songs.  My seven year old littleman really wanted a bird feeder.  So last week I bit the bullet and bought a bird feeder, hook/stand, bird seed and a water dispenser.  We placed it outside of my office window, my office is in the parsonage.  I not only get to see, watch, and marvel at my little ones excitement as he checks the birder feeder and hopes to see a bird but I also get to have my window open and hear the birds chirping and I catch a glimpse of a few of them when I remember to look up from my desk.  Ahh the reminders of new life!    A bonus has been watching my little one draw birds – I wonder where he got such talent.

4.  My friend is running the marathon on Friday, because it is on her bucket list.  What is something on your bucket list?

This is a tough one, not been much of a bucket list writer.  To be a better knitter, to meet up with some of my online Knitbits Friends and others who I’ve been blessed to know because of online social networks, to take quality vacations with my boys (we so rarely do that, doesn’t have to be grand but just being away).

5.  Tell us about one precious thing (tangible) you keep around your house, your altar, your pocket, and what is its story?

Really just one?  How about 3…….My IPad (I know that sounds lame but I have my reasons).  My iPad is a means of communicating with those whom I love and can’t always see, it holds lots of pictures of those I love and things I encounter,, it holds a library of Kindle books, and a plethora of knitting patterns.  My knitting needles -Addi Clicks – a gift from a friend, a way she used to say thanks for the care and support I had given her and her husband during his decline in health and ultimately his passing and for my knitting a prayer shawl for a friend of hers who was facing chemo treatments herself.  This was a gift totally unexpected and I am still in awe of it! Knitting calms my inner most being and helps draw me closer to my God.  Lastly, I would say a moleskin journal and colorful pens (Every good journal needs some color).  I also have different moleskin journals for different meetings.

Well that its – Fridays over but it’s been fun playing my first round of Friday Fives.  I look forward to more.  Thanks RevGalBlogPals!