Tomorrow is my last official day being unemployed. On Monday I start my new job as senior pastor of Crestwood Christian Church in Lexington, Ky. As with most pastoral searches, this has been a lengthy one. I first heard from the chair of the search committee in February of this year, so that means the process took nine months from first contact to first day on the job. That’s a lot of time to have the future thrown up in the air and your emotions on edge. I’m glad it is coming to an end.
It’s actually been an enjoyable journey, despite all the emotions. The church here in Lexington has been incredibly hospitable and understanding, and my previous church in Lincolnshire, Ill., was supportive and gracious. In both places, I believe my family and I had the honor of experiencing church as it was meant to be. That doesn’t mean there weren’t moments of humanness, but I hope that God was honored through the process.
We’re done with our goodbyes in Illinois, which were tearful and heartbreaking and so, so sacred to me. I cried the hardest when saying goodbye to my friend and mentor, but I cried often when thinking about leaving such a wonderful group of people. I’m blessed t count many of them as friends.
And now, let the hellos begin! Crestwood is about triple the size of Lincolnshire, so I have a lot more names to learn. I’m sure I’ll call someone “Bill” instead of “Bob” or “Mary” instead of “Martha.” I just hope I don’t look at Bill and call him “Martha!” The memory function of my brain will be in overdrive the next few weeks. I wish there wasn’t so much junk up there wasting valuable space (do you remember the name of the guy who hosted “The Match Game?” Gene Rayburn).
There’s a lot of excitement that goes along with starting at a new church. I feel an incredible sense of anticipation and expectancy, which is only appropriate as we enter the season of Advent. I believe something new and exciting is about to be born, both within my spirit and within Crestwood Christian Church. I give thanks to God for such wonderful blessings and I eagerly await the arrival of what God is going to do.