I am set to be ordained this coming Saturday. The time is really here. People are gathering and others are stepping forward to support me and witness to this journey. I am blessed and humbled by this process. This journey began in 2009 and it is now 2013 – not a short, superfluous undertaking. I have moved away from my home, arrested my career, sold off many things and spent a boat-load of time and money to do this.
To be at this place then is a big WOW!
Along the way, some have asked me, “Why don’t you just take the shortcut?” You know, the one that is in the back of magazines? The one that you send in your $19.95 and they send back a certification to some religious organization. While I have a low opinion of those ads and of those certifications, it appears to those asking me this – they hold no higher regard for the path I did take. I can only believe this says more to the public view of Christianity than it says of my journey, God’s desire or what it means to serve. Whenever I have been asked this, which thankfully was seldom, I pass it off thinking they really do not understand God or this journey at all.
And then there are the ordained who no longer serve. Yes, it appears the world is full of people ordained who do not work in ministry anymore. In fact, I have heard as many as 50% will drop out of ministry in the first 5 years of service. This is not a particularly glowing endorsement for the ordination path and I would be wrong to think I actually have something different or better to offer. Fact is I am average. I am a hard-worker but not a genius. I have a good heart but not a saint. I am no different than my colleagues wanting to serve God and God’s people. Needless to say then, news of this statistic is bothersome. There have been days this has not left my mind.
So why do this? What does ordination mean? It means I am committed to carrying this through. It means I have decided YES. I lay my will down for God’s. Despite the realities or what others have to say, I continue forward, trusting God; hoping God is up to something I just cannot see right now. My hope remains with God.
This Saturday – August 24, 2013 between 10am-12pm I take my vows to ministry. I vow in front of witnesses including the church, to serve God and God’s people in love and with grace. This Saturday I commit the remainder of my life to the One who saves – not just in personal devotion but to be the light and witness for others to find their way.
I long to be in God’s court, working on God’s side – hoping and helping others along their way. There is a lot to be done in this world; there is a lot of lost and lonely – a lot broken and battered – with God’s help my sleeves are rolled, ready to pitch in. With God’s guidance, I get to serve others, love others, live the remainder of my life as God lures and where hope endures.
And so I stand here now to thank God for this journey. I thank God for guiding me along the way. I trust in God – You are my life, my joy and my love. To know life is limiting, to know You is everlasting.
I am ready.
“I believe in the immeasurable power of love; that true love can endure any circumstance and reach across any distance.”- Maraboli