Life has changed drastically for David and I the last few weeks. Two weeks ago David (and I) made the decision to resign from the church he’ been serving for the past almost 3 years. It was a decision we did not come to quickly, or happily, or anything like that. It was an agonizing decision, one made through lots of prayer, many sleepless nights, lots of talking. It was a decision that affected many in the church–some have stayed, many have left. The exact reasons and “what went down” does not matter. What matters is it’s not always easy to be obedient. It hasn’t been an easy 3 years here at this church, making it hard to be obedient in staying sometimes. However, we always knew this is where God wanted us. And as hard as it was to stay at times, it was even harder to leave. Why would this be hard? Well, because, by leaving we know we’re leaving these people to deal with their dysfunction. I suppose that’s not entirely true. Over the past 3 years David and the deacons have been diligently preaching the Word to the people in the church, opening their eyes to the extreme dysfunction here. But, due to a small faction of troublemakers, the church as a whole choose to listen the screaming minority (as they have for 40 years) rather than what God was clearly telling them through Scripture and his servants. It’s sad. What will come of those who have chosen to stay? What will come to those who chose to leave?
We have gone through anger, joy at being released, uncertainty for the future, grief of leaving a life we’ve known for 3 years, hurt, trust in the Father who lead us to this church, lead us through the valley and has now lead us out of it. How do you help a grieving husband, who put his whole heart, life and soul into a group of people, only to find out they told horrible lies and are now reverting back to their old ways? How do you stop caring for a group of people you’ve cared for entirely for 3 years? How do you move on from here? How do you heal from these things? So many questions, and not many answers right now. But, we keep on trusting because it’s God who is always faithful to us, and He hasn’t failed us yet so why would he start now? We know our decision to move on was the right one, was one in which God guided us to make. We’re learning that integrity and courage are HARD and not very popular all the time. However, God is good and takes care of his children.
So, what now? Where do we go from here? Well, in the immediate future we’re packing and moving (with the help of David’s mom–YEAH!) to another church’s empty parsonage. Since I still have my job, we’ll stay here in Hillsdale until David is able to find something else. He had an interview over Thanksgiving, has another one coming up in December and there are several other areas that we have yet to make contact. We know he’ll find something and are trusting the Lord to guide and direct us to the next place He would have us serve. We’re excited at the prospect of going to a HEALTHY church. Wow!! What will we do with ourselves? Do we expect perfection? Of course not!! We know better than that, after all, we’re all imperfect people, aren’t we? 🙂 But, we HAVE come to realize that being imperfect and being unhealthy are 2 different things.
I will keep you updated as we know more. Right now, we’re so looking forward to having a stress “free” Christmas, a time we’ll be able to celebrate with our families without having to fight with the piano player as to what day the Christmas Eve service should be…No, I’m not kidding. I hope you’re able to find some rest and solitude in this Christmas season.