So, today I begin the first of a series of intense farewell lunches where I say goodbye to the pastor friends I have made over the last year, and say goodbye to others that have just been here to help me along the way.
I feel simultaneously relieved to be leaving and sad to see my friends stay and myself leave. I mean, to be honest I haven’t really done much in the way of keeping in touch the past few weeks while I’ve been working myself to the bone to get ready to turn the page. I suppose the one thing that makes me contemplative today is how little I really connected at times. I tried, but everything here has felt transitory from day one, and maybe it always was. But either way, it’s been a thought-provoking experience.
I guess I just think about everything going on, and I’m glad that God has given me the grace to finish my pastorate strong, and that I have seen Him build upon what I tried to establish for my people. As I get ready to go to lunch with Ray, my methodist buddy, I just think about how it has been good times. It will continue to be good times though. If we’re all truly working towards Christ, whether it be at one table or a few different ones, wherever Christhas set Himself a table, there are my brothers and sisters.
Ray may not understand my conversion, mayhap he never will, but He has been a great friend, and an esteemed colleague throughout the year. I know I couldn’t do quite so well as a pastor without friends like him. I guess as things wind down, I look back at the year, over the acreage I have improved here at home and at my church spiritually by the grace of God, and I am pleased with the work. I look back with fondness at what has happened. The Lord has humbled me, taught me well, and will continue to do so.
I guess in closing I’d like to just offer my thanks to you, friends, who have upheld me and urged me on along the way. Thank you.