Over the past few years RJ and I have wrestled with the concept of Stability, as in the vows of St. Benedict. It seems that the most effective ministries take place when a missionary, a pastor, or a family makes a commitment to a community, and fully invests their lives there. At first this was hard for me because I grew up moving a lot and traveling constantly. I don't really like to stay in one place. But as I have been more convinced of the merit of investing one's self this way, and especially as my family grows, I find myself wanting to find a place to stay for a little while.
This is where so many questions begin to arise, mostly "where". It seems like so many things keep holding us in Brownwood. I wanted to stay until this baby comes, so we could stay with Betsy, and then this opportunity to minister from the Nexus Community Home (parsonage) has been such a blessing. But after being here for 6 years I still feel no attachment for this place. Nothing about it makes me want to stay here forever.
As I start to think about what we do like her, and what would make me and RJ want to stay some place, it really is all about the people who live there. More than anything else RJ and I want to live near the people we care about. We want to invest our lives in particular people.
What does that look like at our age when most of our friends are not settling down anywhere yet, and when they do they are more and more scattered? I guess only time will tell. We will stay here until God sets us free from the ties that bind us here, and then who knows? Maybe we will pack up all of our belongings and go on a trip like in Away We Go. We can prayerfully visit the cities of those dearest to us until, like Abraham, God tells us to stay.
Until then we will continue to build the relationships that God has given us, and see what doors he opens us. Ultimately I think the lesson is that, for us the opportunities to follow will be relationships, not jobs, even though that can be a little scary.
For the next few months I would like to have some of the people we hold most dear over to share a meal, and then I will share with you about the time we spent together, and even more importantly what inspires us about who these people are and what hey are passionate about.