Today something happened. I don’t quite understand it yet, but I definitely feel it. An uncomfortable unsettling of my life as I have known it. Something has shifted deep inside the core and there is no going back. Today I packed up my converted garage apartment marking the final weeks of this season and my life as; a resident of Dublin, a house mate with the Masons, a close-by son/nephew/grandson, a frequenter of the Hopyard/Peets/BART/A’s games/Main Street, a Pastor and congregant at CrossWinds Church, and a single man among countless other things. I cannot begin to describe how important this place is to me and how deeply my love of this community runs.
It seems like just yesterday that I came to STUFF with some friends and really enjoyed it, so much that I kept coming back. After a few years I started volunteering for Nick, and before I knew it he offered me an internship. This is the place my faith came alive and this is place I learned ministry.
I remember how exciting it was to have sleep overs with my friends back then, we’d stay up all night playing video games or talking about girls. Over time our friendships grew; we were band mates, room mates, team mates, co-dreamers/travelers/adventurers, and kingdom partners. This is the place I learned what it meant to be brothers.
I will not soon forget the look on everyone’s face as we said goodbye to grandma. It hasn’t been an easy year as both Great-Grandma, and Grandma passed on into the hereafter, bringing our family intimately close with both the frailty of life, and one another. This place is where I was born and raised, and where I learned to reflect on what it means to have a family, be a brother, and be a son.
The fog was thick and lights illuminated the moisture in the air as I knelt down and began to nervously speak. Nicknames and memories floated from my voice as I proclaimed my love and asked that sacred and holy question. This is the place I learned to love and be loved.
As heavy as the feeling of “good bye” weighs on my spirit tonight, my heart’s scales are equally burdened by a certain mysterious “hello”. I do not believe that any of these memories are final, or that I could turn back and relive them over and over again, rather, my sense is that as this time in this place comes to a close, tomorrow will still be yet ahead, forthcoming. The unknown of unmade memories, friendships, careers, and families, as breathtaking a thought as they may be, are also utterly terrifying. When it comes down to it, I am a believer that as blessed as I have been in my life thus far, my deepest intimacy with God and the richest lessons and challenges lay ahead, uncharted.