As we've been looking for a church, I realize that:
1)I am still grieving the church family we left after fifteen years. I've learned that making decisions during grief is not wise--so I continue the path of grieving and seeking--grieving and seeking each week.
2)Connections are not made quickly. I had to leave deep, deep friendships, prayer support, and ministries, which helped me grow closer to God and provided an opportunity for spiritual nourishment. Having to leave a place that had become "holy ground" and persons, who represented Christ to me in some way, is extremely difficult. However, I just remember that friendships are formed gradually over weeks and months and maybe years.
3)I am realizing how my role as "the pastor's wife" opened more opportunities for involvement and friendship than just being a "regular person," who walks through the door of the church each week. I never had to worry about people to meet or places to go. People came to me. I was able to get ministries started quickly, because Mike was my husband. Although I did have to go through proper channels my requests were honored quickly. I never realized how much being the pastor's wife was my ticket to implementing what I believed God was telling me to do.
So, as time passes, I am becoming more comfortable in "ordinary time," which I am finding is not "boring, uneventful, undistinguished" as Wendy Wright asserts. I find myself enjoying these large expanses of time where I can sit and rest with God. I am not running out every other night to a meeting at church or planning an event. And, most important, I am finding new pathways within myself to walk with God--something that might not have been possible to the extent I am experiencing if I was still connected to church.
I do not know how long I will be here. But I am not pushing myself to move on. Cultivating the richness of this opportunity, I am realizing is a gift. I'll know when "ordinary time" will end, but right now I am resting in the pattern of grieving and seeking in God's presence.
God, many times we find ourselves in ordinary time. Help us to welcome the tension involved in ordinary time as a stirring in our souls to go deeper into ourselves and with you. Self-knowledge and a closer walk with you are woven together in the ordinary times we experience. We have the assurance that you are with us always; and for that constant grounding, we offer thanks. Amen.