To everything there is a season…. Ecclesiastes 3:1
After weeks of prayer….I turned in my key yesterday. Not the key to my work…..not the key to an old home after moving to another. Although it is a home of sorts. It’s the place where my family lives. The place where I know I am loved without judgement. The place where I became a part of….where healing of old hurts took place because of love. I turned my key in to my old church home….and it was difficult to know this chapter was closing…but I’ve walked this road long enough to know sometimes we are called to the hard things.
A few months ago, I began the role in leadership of Celebrate Recovery in another church in my community. It has been an amazing experience. As we started meeting weekly two of my friends that attend my church asked within a week’s time if I felt like I was being drawn to that other church….if I felt like I was being led to attend there with my CR people…..and I hadn’t really thought about it….I was convinced God needed me at my church as He has used my transparency to foster change among the women there.
Shortly after….it came….a stirring of conviction……keenly aware of a prompt to visit there the following Sunday….and I prayed all week….trying to make sure. Sunday morning came and I almost stayed in bed as it would have been the easiest decision to just do nothing….but I knew in that the enemy gets a victory so I prayerfully got ready….no idea where I was headed in my Sunday clothes…..only knowing I was going to church….but still unsure of which until I got in my van, backed out into the street, at the stop sign, I prayed again….then felt compelled to turn left. I sat with another CR leader in sea of mostly unfamiliar faces….but felt peace about being there. After, I felt like I needed to be open to changing my church home. I felt that we, my husband and I needed to really pray about this decision.
I prayed about that discussion….talking to my hubby. I had an uneasiness about his reaction and I tried to put it off…but feeling conviction….I bit the bullet. I prayed and asked God that if He wanted us to consider this change that He would make it clear by my hubby’s agreement to at least consider it. My husband’s reaction was totally not what I expected. My hubby agreed….wholeheartedly agreed….and we had the most spiritually encouraging conversation….and it seemed not only like confirmation but I began to recognize this change, this change of homes…..may not be about me. Celebrate Recovery may simply be the vehicle God used to drive me to the stop sign….to be willing to choose left. This past month every Sunday we’ve gone left. My husband’s mind made up after a couple of weeks….and although I had peace while I was there…and even through the week…..I drug my feet…..I didnt want to say it with finality….didn’t want to yield to permanently leaving the safety of His flock of my people…the family I had grown to love. Don’t get me wrong this new church is a good church……I feel welcome and it too is an awesome church with good leadership, solidly grounded in the Word of God. The only problem…..it isn’t home. Yet I knew in my heart of hearts my resistance to this change was disobedient.
So I made an appointment with the Pastor who had been spiritually challenging me weekly for the past five years…..a man I respect tremendously. As I explained what brought me in…..and even though during the conversation, I tried to keep the finality of this decision at bay…..I knew. I knew this was the last time I would walk in as a member…..I knew that I needed to walk out surrendered to that fact. It became clear what I needed to do…..I dug in my pocket for my key….my symbol of belonging to this home of God’s family at the corner of 6th and Lincoln…..and gently layed it in Pastor’s hand.
And I grieved the loss of my home the second I walked out the door….yielding is painful sometimes…..
…..but I know there is a room full of women in my Friday CR group who need to find their church home too….who need to find the healing that I have found through the unconditional love and acceptance of those church ladies at my old home church. That this new home of mine was slowly becoming their home….every Friday night……and that home is the easiest door to walk through. I recognize that the other CR members and I can be the bridge for those women and others to walk in the door on Sunday morning. Likewise, maybe because of our obedience, the new church home can be a bridge for my husband and I to a new level of commitment to God in our lives and our marriage.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own underatanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your path. Proverbs 3:5-6