June 16, 2019
7 weeks ago, when I announced I accepted the call to Nebraska and would be leaving New York, this day seemed so far off. June felt forever away… that I had tons of time left in this place. But here it is and there is so much to grieve and so much to be excited for.
When I pulled up to First Trinity 3263 days ago I never imagined how dear this place, really the people, would become. It is an insane understatement to say that my time here has changed and shaped every area of my life.
Last night at worship I was caught by the themes of light and darkness in connection with following God.
First, in the Gospel reading:
“I am the light of the world. If you follow me, you won’t have to walk in darkness, because you will have the light that leads to life.” (John 8:12)
“If you follow me...” That phrase struck me… jumped off the page as if it was bold, italicized, and underline. Earlier in the week I was wrestling through some conversations I’ve had with friends in the last couple months. I was trying to figure out why phrases like “your decision to move” or “your choice to leave” felt so foreign to me. Of course I had a decision to make but when it really came down to it, I felt that there was no choice… God was clearly showing me where He was calling. REALLY, the only decision was whether I would obey and follow God’s call or not. So, to see this truth, that I won’t walk in darkness if I follow Him, gave me something to hold on to and depend on in my last hours in this place.
A few moments later, we sang these hymn lyrics:
“Christ by my leader by night as by day
Safe through the darkness, for He is the way
Gladly I follow, my future His care.
Darkness is daylight when Jesus is there.”
Both of these things are true:
I’m hardcore grieving the losses that have come with choosing to follow Jesus and a HUGE part of me doesn’t want to leave.
I also gladly follow Him and am excited to go.
Both of these things can be true because of this greater truth: my future is in His hands, it is His care, along with the futures of all my friends and family and church here. Between moving and some really hard things in the lives of people I love here, much of these last 7 weeks have felt pretty “dark”.
BUT Psalm 139:12 reminds us that even darkness is not dark at all with Jesus near… and near he has been!!! We will journey safely through the darkness with Him as our leader.
There’s no One I’d rather follow!
Here’s to what has been and what is to come… Christ as Leader every step!