The apartment is packed, the snacks are purchased, and our landlord has collected our keys. The moving company plans to arrive in 12 hours, and we have had our last dinner (and dessert) as California residents. It is all real now. Very real. And I feel it will only be more real tomorrow.
Tomorrow we begin our trek across America, and I will begin to taking to Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram to document the trek and share our journey cross-country with friends and family. If you are on all of these services, it may feel like overkill between both myself and my wife; and for that I apologize, as I am trying to learn all these things and how to best make them compliment each other.
Typing this as we essentially close an era of life, I feel immense and conflicting emotions. In a sense I am full of regret–regret that the choices I have made as a husband and leader have not led us directly into a new house or into a secured job, regret that I did not invest more earnestly in some of our neighbors and local acquaintances, regret that we never found a church body (inasmuch as leaving them now would be difficult). I just carry with me a sense that I should have had intentionally loved people more. This feeling has struck most deeply in our apartment complex, where neighbors have pulled me aside to tell me they are sad for our leaving because we were “good neighbors”. If being a good neighbor means politely greeting others from time to time and being relatively quiet, then they are right; but if it means more, then surely we are not in a position to be complimented. I didn’t sacrifice much for these neighbors; I never even helped them move new furniture. That being said, I wish I had. Now that the opportunity is passed, I look back wishing that I had been Christ to them, and I don’t think Christ would have simply been polite and stayed relatively quiet (not based on the historical accounts we have of him, anyway).
Contrastingly, however, I have a great deal of anticipation and excitement. Our first few years together and the transitions required to thrive during them were more tumultuous than either of us anticipated, but I do not foresee that level of difficulty with this move. Frankly, I think it will be wonderful. Despite knowing that we will be stretched financially and socially over the net few months, I am at peace and ever-hopeful that God is going to continue drawing us closer to each other, even as we grow closer to Him and others. I am also excited about the people with whom we will be able to reconnect, those with whom we may form a bond, and those who we have not yet met but may prove to be kindred spirits. Even in regard to those who we are leaving, I see the possibility of our relationships growing, of them being forever altered but no less deep.
I guess the best way to describe my attitude is that I look toward all that God will do in, through, and around this move; and I am filled with great hope that His Spirit will lead us into relationships and opportunities to bless others and further his kingdom in ways cannot see.
Not a bad reason to get in the car tomorrow.