Friday, August 17, 2012

leaving, lasts, and His purposes.

They are leaving.
Summer is leaving.
School is coming.
Sanity will most likely be lost soon.

Yet, God will still make a way for His purpose's.
Don't let the craziness in your life take away from
God's best.

There is a family in my life/our congregation that are leaving after 8 wonderful months.
Now, they will not be apart of my weekly schedule.
Tyler and Erin, our intern this summer and his wife, and their family are leaving Sunday.
You may remember my post ''Moses and Marriage: More on the Divine Name.'' in July. That was
Tyler's masterpiece. :)

My Mom and I were out to eat in early January with friends at our local Mexican restaurant over lunch and went over to talk to Grant and Tyler was with him. {Our Pastor, my Greek teacher, and Makenna's daddy.}
We hadn't yet met Makenna, but discussed how she was doing, how it was KILLING us that we hadn't seen her yet, and my recent blog post about her birth. Then, Grant realized that I hadn't met Tyler officially, yet. The introductions proceeded. Tyler this is... and this is...

Whether or not they had had their initiation as part of staff yet or not I don't remember, but
I do remember thinking like all those African children that asked us the same question.
How long are you going to be here?
When I received these questions the first few times I found them as just a question out of curiousity, but it was a much deeper issue. They were afraid of being rejected... of another special person in their life leaving them and possibly never coming back. That question broke my heart as much as it was ringing in theirs. It seems that when Tyler, Erin, and their kiddos came to church that was my attitude. They aren't going to be here very long. So, my heart didn't want to invest.
It was that moment that I look back on and say,

Funny how life works. Correction: Funny and how wonderful GOD works.
Ironically, Pastor Grant told us ladies that we could bypass Tyler and just get to know Erin.
And, I was somewhat okay with that. In the Lord's timing, in late January of this year, though I joined a  Greek class with 3 awesome, godly guys. Although, when I did begin, I thought that it was only two. Turned out that Tyler is, in our opinion, a Greek expert. He would sit in or pop his head in the class whenever possible to be of assistance... His oldest child and only daughter, a preschooler, would sit in with us as well during the school year. She is truly a joy!

I came to find out that Tyler and I had one very significant thing in common:
We are both Bible nerds. Geeks, Jesus freaks, geeky Greek people... Whatever you want to call us.
In all seriousness, though, we are both very passionate about knowing the background of Scripture. The Greek + Hebrew verbs and tenses, their culture, and what was going on in and around that event. He is in seminary and I'm almost in 8th grade, but hey, Jesus made a way. :) In the midst of Greek vocabs, church activities, and extended notes... we have a blast. Or at least I do anyway. ;)

Cheesy grins today after Greek class. :D

I would run into Erin and the kiddos every once in awhile at church. Taking care of them in nursery or catching up with their daughter about how her life was going :) In late July the Lord prompted me to ask Erin to come to my girl's Bible study, RADIANCE, before leaving to go back to seminary.

Thankfully in the midst of late notices, she was able to come, share a beautiful message, and  precious time with us.

We sincerely enjoyed getting to know and hang with Erin more. And we can't forget those analogies about our unique beauty and God's intricate love for us! :) That was a big highlight to most of us there that night.

You see, usually, we are the ones leaving. I have moved all around and it seems that this is one of the first times in my life that a friend of ours was moving away from us. It isn't easy. While I wanted to avoid this hard time of goodbyes and lasts earlier this year I wouldn't have it any other way. I wouldn't want to trade any of the sad lasts for any of the many refreshing church hallway conversations.

Last Sunday when Tyler preached for the last time at our church at the end he gave the congregation encouragement, thank-yous, and last words. Let's just say that it was a way to top off our emotional weekend. Successfully, I didn't crawl into a ball and bawl with our congregation as witnesses. ;)

In the midst of this change, no matter how small it may seem, I am comforted by this quote that I read this evening from the book So Long, Insecurity by Beth Moore.

The truth is, God uses change to change us.

So simple, but it was no coincidence that I read it today. Oh, His timing.

Lord, I'm utterly blown away.

Praying we will have the perserverence to keep in touch with them in any way possible... and lest we lack in doing that I hope that we will lift them up before God in prayer as often as they cross our minds.
We will miss them more than they could imagine. So, for this week, we will enjoy the last few times we get to be with them. Let's send them off with more encouragement, prayers, and well wishes than they can hold in their hearts, friends.

After all, how much joy have they brought into ours??

Philippians 1:7, MSG

7-8It's not at all fanciful for me to think this way about you. My prayers and hopes have deep roots in reality. You have, after all, stuck with me all the way from the time I was thrown in jail, put on trial, and came out of it in one piece. All along you have experienced with me the most generous help from God. He knows how much I love and miss you these days. Sometimes I think I feel as strongly about you as Christ does!

Philippians 1:7, ESV

7 It is right for me to feel this way about you all, because I hold you in my heart, for you are all partakers with me of grace, both in my imprisonment and in the defense and confirmation of the gospel.


Ya'll, while having my shortest blog ever this week I may have also written my longest one.
I. must. go. to. sleep. Now, most of my drafts have been cleared and now all these thoughts swirling in my mind today have been typed out. Be blessed... and bless you for reading this book! ;)
Until next time...

In Abba Jesus,


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