At any time I could change, any day,
a beautiful change.
(The Innocence Mission, "A Beautiful Change")
A beautiful yet bittersweet change is afoot. And I can pinpoint it more specifically than the "any day" the song notes. June. Sometime in June.
After nearly eight years in Southern California, these Midwesterners are heading back home again. Well, sort of. A new home, a new state, a new city, a new church, but one that is situated a stone's throw from one of the Great Lakes. About six hours from Northeast Ohio.
Chicago. Or rather, the western suburbs of Chicago.
(Poor Juliette says "Who are you calling a Midwesterner?" She is 100% Californian.)
On Sunday I shared the news with my beloved congregation. It was heartbreaking. I love them, and will miss them terribly, and the feeling seems to be mutual. Serving here has been a profoundly grace-filled gift.
I cried, probably too much.
(I told that to Lisa and she wrote back, "I think I cried when I quit my first job at Famous Footwear and I never baptized anyone there.")
In the letter to the congregation, I wrote, "You welcomed Juliette into this world with such love and fanfare that it still seems that she moves through the world wrapped in blessings." They welcomed me into the ministry with the same caliber of love and fanfare.
They are great at love and fanfare.
So it's bittersweet. We are undeniably very excited about this move. The position leaped off the pages of the Christian Century classifieds, catching my attention before I'd intended to start the Search and Call process. I'm still amazed that I received the call. I'll be an associate minister.
Wrapped in blessings.