Thursday, August 12, 2010

An Awkward Time

Toni and I have been at her parents' cabin up in northern Wisconsin since Monday.  This was an unplanned time away.  I don't know what I had planned to do with my last week of vacation but I do know that I would have never missed the Cokato Corn Carnival if things were "normal."  It feels very strange to have been away.  I've managed to keep busy and enjoy some relaxing time.

Tonight we head back.  Toni has appointments tomorrow and I'm planning to lead worship and share the Lord's Supper at Cokato Apartments Building III.  On Saturday one of my cousins is getting married in the twin cities and on Sunday we'll worship at another church while our youth director and seminarian Nate Bendorf preaches and leads worship.  My last week of work at Evangelical Lutheran Church of Cokato begins Monday.  I'll lead worship as usual on Sunday, August 22,  After that we'll be living in the church's parsonage until we can figure out "what's next."

It's an awkward sort of time.

It's awkward because...
  • ... it's hard to explain why I ended up resigning my call as pastor at ELC.  Though those in Cokato who have literally suffered through the last year might be able to understand, there are very few who know the whole story.
  • ... we'll be in Cokato after I my work at ELC is over.  Every other time I've left off working at a church it was because I had work waiting for me in another place.  That's not true this time.  It's awkward and kind of scary to not know what's next.  
Put those two things together and you might be able to see how awkward all of this is.  Because we'll be in Cokato, at least for the forseeable future, we'll end up seeing people who have lots of questions and doubts and deep feelings.  Some of them will talk with us and, hopefully, we'll begin to understand one another.  Others will feel too awkward and won't know what to say.

I'll be praying that the conversations that need to happen will happen.  I'll be praying that, as it says in Martin Luther's Small Catechism, we'll be ready to believe the best about one another, even when we don't really understand.  I'll also be praying that we understand that our real adversaries are not other people, but are, instead, the devil and his allies who are out to devour us.  I'll be praying that we will be kind and respectful with one another, loving one another as God himself as first loved us.

After all, if Jesus can love and put up with me, even giving his life for me on the cross, we should be able to love and care for one another--even when the awkward times come.

1 comment:

  1. Steve,
    Thanks for going to lunch with me last week, I enjoyed it. Also, thank you very much for your concern about Christine's well being during this very tough time. It really means a lot to us. God bless.