Yes, big change is coming for our family and for Granger Community Church. We are moving on, going somewhere else, leaving the place we have loved so much to a new place. People’s emotions have been all over the place in reaction to our announcement. Ours emotions have been too.
I want to tell you that, honestly I have hope. Honestly I know all will be well. Honestly I know God will lead us and He will lead you. There is no dislike, no malice, no contempt. No great scandal, just great change. And change can be difficult.
The only Unchangeable thing that remains that I am sure of is God’s great love. In the last two years, I’ve been on a faith journey that has taken me all over the place. I didn’t “feel” God. I didn’t “see” Him. Me, who has always seen God…always heard His voice, from the time I was really, really young–But then, suddenly when I felt I needed His closeness the most, it was just gone. I guess you could call it my own “Dark night of the Soul.”
I felt the weight of the world I had been carrying, trying to bring hope and change and goodness and love and faith to everyone on the planet–And the weight was crushing, so I let it fall. All my own hopes, dreams, faith…I just let it fall to the ground and shatter because it was just too much to carry on my own & I don’t think it was what God or anybody intended.
When I let it all go, when all the shards of my broken faith laid down in front of me, all my own efforts…everything I held so tightly to, just crashed at my feet–Honestly, it felt pretty bad.
For the first time in my life I let others lead me…really lead me. A judge, a teacher, a mentor with light shining out of her eyes, a prophet, a gay friend, a nun with a beautiful spirit, a friend who is a convicted felon, an alcoholic, an old, old friend whose wisdom has guided me through many storms, a counselor, a soul friend, my husband…all People of God, each slowly, gently, they handed me back the shards of my broken faith and pieced me back together.
God’s spirit spoke gently to me, through His creation, the language He knows that I know. He spoke to me through the end of my camera lens, through sunsets and storms and rainbows. He spoke promises so true in the sky, I could not ignore His truth. His people, His promise, His truth mended me back together.
A quote has stuck with me for many years, “Heaven is reality itself. All that is fully real is Heavenly. For all that can be shaken will be shaken and only the unshakeable remains.”
― C.S. Lewis, The Great Divorce
And you know what, what’s Unshakeable in me has remained. And I am humbled. So very humbled. I finally see that it’s about letting others love and lead me too, not just leading everyone else until I almost drop dead from exhaustion.
What is Unshakeable? What remains?
His love. It’s all I know. He is Good. I know that too.
And my soul is confident. I am reminded of one of my favorite old hymns. Maybe you know it too:
Be still my soul
Be still, my soul: the Lord is on thy side.
Bear patiently the cross of grief or pain.
Leave to thy God to order and provide;
In every change, He faithful will remain.
Be still, my soul: thy best, thy heavenly Friend
Through thorny ways leads to a joyful end.
Be still, my soul: thy God doth undertake
To guide the future, as He has the past.
Thy hope, thy confidence let nothing shake;
All now mysterious shall be bright at last.
Be still, my soul: the waves and winds still know
His voice Who ruled them while He dwelt below.
Be still, my soul: when dearest friends depart,
And all is darkened in the vale of tears,
Then shalt thou better know His love, His heart,
Who comes to soothe thy sorrow and thy fears.
Be still, my soul: thy Jesus can repay
From His own fullness all He takes away.
Be still, my soul: the hour is hastening on
When we shall be forever with the Lord.
When disappointment, grief and fear are gone,
Sorrow forgot, love’s purest joys restored.
Be still, my soul: when change and tears are past
All safe and blessèd we shall meet at last.
Be still, my soul: begin the song of praise
On earth, believing, to Thy Lord on high;
Acknowledge Him in all thy words and ways,
So shall He view thee with a well pleased eye.
Be still, my soul: the Sun of life divine Through passing clouds shall but more brightly shine.
Honestly, I know that all will be well. For you and for me.