Monday, October 24, 2005

We recently made the difficult decision to leave our church home. We came to our precious church after a rough, emotional time last spring. It has been a tremendous time of healing for each of us. Todd, though he deeply desires to get back into youth ministry, was able to sit back and rest. I was able to participate in the worship while putting aside the leadership roles I've had in the past. Hannah, who struggled with tummy aches, does not have the stress related symtoms anymore and Caleb has been... well... still Caleb :) . As soon as we made the desicion to visit Echo, we were surrounded by people who embraced us and a pastor (and outstanding friend) who has given us an unbelievable amount of support, love and prayer while knowing we planned to eventually move on. I love receiving hugs and encouragement from so many wonderful friends. I even enjoy listening to dear Sheldan, a mentally handicap man, calling every one the wrong name or asking Todd if he can help him in the sound booth every week. These people have captured my heart and I can not pretend that our leaving will be an easy one. There is so much I'd like to say to all of them, but I can't find the words to use. How can you thank someone for helping you heal? How do you express in words how much you wish that you were called to stay and help them continue to build? I never imagined that I would feel so connected in such a short time. Still, God has called us to move on in this blind journey we are on. I don't begin to understand what He has in mind. We have never been drifters- quite the opposite actually. We liked to get connected and stay put. Somehow God has caused us to step outside our comfort zone and follow Him into the fog. I am so thankful for Echo Christian Fellowship. They will always be a sweet oasis in our wandering desert.

And so comes the next question, "Where do we go from here?"

We honestly don't know. We didn't intend to find Echo, so somehow I imagine the next place will be the same. Just by following his lead.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Working in Panera has given me an interesting perspective on how we as humans behave. Every morning I work in the bakery and have the opportunity to give out the daily "fuel" (mainly coffee) to all the mall walkers. These are generally older retired people who "hang out" in our restaurant, drink coffee and their biggest decision for the day is which pastry to try today. Some of them are very predictable and I am beginning to know what they will order before they get to my register. Some of them stay so long they eventually order lunch so they can linger longer. They have close friends whom they tease, laugh with and share concerns with. They are living life in the slow lane. Time doesn't seem to matter to them.

Me, I'm am just the opposite.

I live each moment ahead of myself, trying to anticipate what the next hour or minute will bring. I can't seem to stay in the present and instead seem to be missing out on things happening right NOW. I know that working, raising two kids and being the best partner possible to Todd requires a lot of time and preplanning. But I am also realizing that in order for me to be the best at all of those things, I have to live where I am right now. Even if "right now" is the farthest from where I really want to be.

I'm sure they will never know the impact these precious seniors have had on me, but I am awful glad I've been able to share in their moments.

Even if its just serving them coffee.