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Dear 2016

My fear is that this year, this year when I want everything to change, will be another year where everything just stays the same. 

So 2014, bring me the patience to wait until it is time for God’s plan to bloom before me. Just do it soon, okay?

While 2014 was a year of struggling for patience, it was also a year of great accomplishment. Reaching the ends of long trod roads. 2014 was the year of my seminary graduation and my ordination. Plenty of new adventures and ministry in those experiences. Yet my fear was for what would come after. Waiting and hoping for “an exit plan, a place to land, some place new, an adventure.” 

The only new places in 2014 was a job working retail over Christmas and the office temp job that started just days before 2015.

While they weren’t the new place, new adventure I sought at the end of 2013, they did one thing – they reminded me what I was called to do. The discomfort pushed me to do more than wait.

So I applied for a unit of CPE at the hospital for the summer of 2015. If I wasn’t going anywhere yet, I was at least going to find a way to do ministry.

Just as I did in 2013, I quit a paying job for a non-paying job and trusted God to provide.

…And once again doors opened. During my first week as a Chaplain Intern I was also signing my first letter of call. Suddenly I was the one saying, “Wait. Be patient.”

Two years ago I was worried about what was coming. About what starting my ministry would look like. One year ago I was worried about how long change would take to get here.

Now I am here. I am ending 2015 not with impatience or fear but gratitude. I am grateful for opportunities coming in their time. Grateful for the chance to discern my call. Grateful for the courage to say “no” when that was not always the easy choice. Grateful for the opportunity that 2016 holds.

On Sunday, as part of my Epiphany sermon, I, along with the rest of the congregation, will get a word written on a star. A word that represents a gift from God that we sometimes don’t recognize in our daily lives. I’m excited to see where God will be calling me to focus and learn in 2016. But if I’m honest, I’m really hoping I don’t get the one that says “patience,” I’ve had plenty of time with that one.

Whatever my “Star Word” is… Dear 2016, Let’s do this!

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