I have known since I was a boy that God was calling me into the pastoral ministry. I pursued it with everything in me. There have been some rough patches along the way, but somehow I managed to stay on track.
A little over a year ago, Singing Hills Christian Church fired me (Oh, I mean let me resign). They sought me out, hired me, moved me, made a miserably difficult ministry and then unceremoniously and for completely non-reasons fired me.
All of that happened while we were dealing with a brain tumor in Wendy.
So we have kids that were uprooted and moved, then confronted with a horrible and very scary health issue, then their father is fired from the church, and now we don’t know what to do in regard to my calling.
I can’t, I won’t pick my kids back up and move them–they have been through enough. I want them to be able to go through school without being uprooted again. I don’t want my kids moving into adulthood resenting the church and God. So we have to stay here in Oregon for another 4 years.
I thought I had figured a way to connect up with a ministry in the United Methodist Church. They were going to transfer my ordination and get things rolling with me being a pastor for them. Long story short, it didn’t work out because of some procedural stuff. So they wanted me to join one of their churches and work through the whole process. No problem.
No problem because we were attending a great UMC church in Hillsboro. I loved the pastor and his preaching. The problem came when we realized how long things were going to take and neither Wendy nor the girls were connecting with the church well. Again, we were off to the wilderness.
Again, I don’t want my kids to hate church. I don’t want to run this race and lose the ones most valuable to me.
This weekend I notified the higher ups in the UMC that we were not at a UMC church any more. That closes the door to the UMC pastorate. Rightfully so.
But I don’t know what to do now. I don’t have a church (either to preach in or even to attend), my kids are slipping out of the routine of worship and they don’t have the same “natural” draw to the church, Wendy and I are disconnected from the church.
God, what is going on? All the doors are closed. I know you called me. I have faithfully followed that calling. But the doors are closed. I am afraid they may be forever closed.
God, are you there?
I suppose this is what it feels like to be lost.