The tie that binds

I am humbled today.

I have so much to do in the next 2 weeks that it is almost daunting to think about most of the time.  Like most moments, I am at my best when there a ton of things on my plate….there is an excited frenzy to what I do…not anxiety–I just work better under the pressure of deadlines and knowing there is no time left…it must be done NOW.

I graduate in 2 weeks…i have major papers and projects due before I say adieu to my Seminary education  3 1/2 years of work.  I will never be the same.  Every aspect of my life has been examined, as it should.  My faith has been questioned, a tie to doctrine challenged.  Literally, every portion of my life–from biological to adopted family connections, to reactions to life situations or crisis, life, death, ethics, prayer, spirituality, sexuality….every area.  I will never be the same.

I am not sure what to feel.  I am excited and scared.  I want an easy answer as to the next step and I want a guarantee that it will be ok.  I will never have that guarantee this side of heaven.  I am so scared.

I have been working in a non-profit realm the last year…the bubble for fundraising and grants is sooooo close to bursting.  I have been working pro bono the last year-I love it…the practical also stresses me beyond belief.

I work in community development…i help schools set up teaching gardens and it applies to so many different areas…i have watched collaboration and partnerships work towards more affordable housing, I have witnessed the scaffolding, the inner workings, I have heard the stories of people gathered.  I am affected by what I have seen and heard.  I will never be the same.

I thought 3 years ago that being a pastor was the only and most high calling in ministry.  I felt like a failure when I learned that the pulpit and administration was not where I was called to be.  For a long time I believed then that my education was in vain, and I thought of quitting many times.  There were obstacles that make my stomach turn, just thinking about them.  To God be the Glory, I persevered.  I am 12 days from being done.  I choke back tears.  I am humbled.

Today I visited with my dear sister Hannah as she embarked on her  first day with us…I re-connected with my chaplain mentor at Avera Behavioral…(felt like coming home), I worked on grant applications, I saw family at the heart hospital where my uncle recovers from a stent placement, I met up with a classmate from CPE–also a dear soul on the journey towards her call…I went to class…I am not the same.

How could I be?  The path may have been set out years ago, but I was unaware of  all the twists and turns to bring me to this time and place.  Who would believe that the bumbling, insecure high school kid, so unsure of herself, desperately wanting to be her big brother would be replaced by that who I am today.  I am almost frustrated when people from my hometown recognize me.  I think, dang, haven’t I changed enough in looks as I feel like I have in personality and outlook.  Then I do a double take, and realize it is me….it has always been me, just the re-tooled  and ever evolving me.

I am not the same.




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